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Story and Photos by Knarine Ghazanchyan | Program Coordinator | Heifer Armenia
In the fall of 2011, 15 new families in the Myasnikyan village of Armavir region received pregnant heifers through the Passing on the Gift® (POG) process, including the Margaryans.
The year 2011 was a very good year for this family of six, which consists of Yuvan, 47, and his wife Varditer, 43, their elder son Henzel, 23, and his wife Termine, 22, a pretty, young woman from the same village, and their younger son Hakob, 20, who serves in the Army. They have two daughters who are married and live with families of their own. A new arrival − grandson Armen – was a long-awaited happiness for the Margaryans, and their barn became filled with the mooing of a cow they had been dreaming about for many years.
The cow provided by Heifer International, Roza, which translates to “Rose,” has already delivered a healthy calf named Brcho. In addition, the family has a dozen hens that lay fresh eggs daily. Yuvan and his son Henzel cultivate the small garden behind their house, growing apricots and vegetables such as potatoes, cucumbers and tomatoes for the family to eat.
In the mornings Varditer boils fresh eggs for breakfast and fills the cups with tasty milk provided by Roza, and the family gathers around the breakfast table. With delight in her eyes, Varditer told us, “We really enjoy the moments when we gather together. Nothing can be compared to the fresh milk from our cow and the omelet or hard-boiled eggs with eggs from our hens. It is so tasty with lavash, Armenian flat bread, especially in summer with tomatoes and cucumbers from our garden.”
Heifer Armenia’s partnership with this community dates back to 2008, when 85 families in Myasnikyan and four other communities in the Armavir region received cows. Two years later, one more community became involved in the project. The initial five communities fulfilled the first round of POG in 2011, passing on Heifer’s values and bringing sustainable livelihoods to even more families in the region.
Yuvan said, “Our cow Roza is still very young, and Brcho is only her first calf. When she calves again she’ll start giving even more milk, I’m sure. Now we get about six liters of milk daily. In a year or two I expect to get double that from Roza. Our cow’s milk is very tasty. Heifer provided us with a stable source of income. Thanks to Heifer for this gift of an animal.”
One could see the happiness shine in the eyes of both Yuvan and Varditer, and they hugged the calf with such love and care. There was no doubt that the family was happy for the investment they received. Thanks to Heifer’s generous donors who made their dream come true!
Learn how you can be a part of the exciting changes in Armenia through Heifer International.