Initiative Update: Mer Hooys

By: Lusine Yeghiazaryan

AIWA SF is excited to continue the educational assistance and English language tutoring to the wonderful girls residing at “Mer Hooys” center in Armenia.  It is very rewarding for us to share the progress and successes of the girls:

Varsik P., one of the high school and program graduates from 2015, recently passed her university exams in English!  She is studying to become a doctor and has been invited to study medical topics in Estonia next summer.

Varsik has supported Mer Hooys President Adrienne Krikorian during Adrienne’s recent visit to Armenia, assisting as an English – Armenian interpreter with the other girls.  AIWA-SF is thrilled at having helped Varsik achieve success in English and support her aspirations.  We look forward to seeing Ani an accomplished doctor in the years to come, and successfully incorporate her language training into her career!

Moreover, four of Mer Hooys’ girls have now graduated from high school and are pursuing advanced education in medicine, psychology, social work and food science. Two other girls are currently studying art at the local specialized high school for developing artists.  Both girls are very talented, and will pursue advanced education in art upon their high school graduation in June 2016.  Six additional older girls have successfully reunited with a parent or family caregiver, with Mer Hooys staff continuing to provide support until they are ready to live independent lives. Further, in June 2015, Mer Hooys welcomed seven new girls aged 8.5 to 11, including 3 sets of sisters.  You can meet all of the beautiful girls and find out more about each one of them at

AIWA-SF, together with our English instructor in Armenia, continuously evaluates girls’ desire, the level of preparation and the aptitude for studying English to fine tune the tutoring program.  AIWA-SF currently supports three English language training groups at Mer Hooys, each at a different level of difficulty. The instructor conducts 45 minute lessons multiple times a week, customizing the coursework for each of the 3 groups. The advanced group has three girls enrolled, the second group consists of five girls and the third one has five younger girls enrolled, including those that recently joined Mer Hooys family.  An additional a forth group is being structured based on the girls’ needs and additional attendees. The speech classes include reading, reciting, dialogues and memorization. The girls particularly enjoy the small classroom performances, dialogues in English, and watching American films. The second weekly class focuses on writing and grammar, and reinforces concepts and new words.  The girls look forward to practicing their English with center visitors, guests and volunteers!


To get involved with the AIWA SF affiliate, please visit or send an email to

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