United Nations Development Programme: Visits in the UAE

UNDP visit to AUEOn March 29, the UNDP delegation traveled to the United Arab Emirates for a series of gatherings and roundtable discussions.

First on the agenda was a meeting with a group of Armenian students in Sharjah, held at the hall of the St. Gregory the Illuminator Armenian Church. During her presentation here, Ms. Vidal urged the youth to place its diverse talents at the service of Armenia’s economic progress and continued democratization, by taking an active role in various development programs. The event was also attended by Mr. Kurkjian and Mr. Raffy Ardhaldjian, chief volunteer officer of the Millennium Children’s Vaccine Fund (MCVF) and chairman of the Ani and Narod Memorial Foundation.

Mr. Ardhaldjian strongly endorsed the UNDP’s “Global Armenia” initiative and congratulated the organization for its diverse Armenian-development portfolio. “I am delighted to support the United Nations not only for its innovative and extremely well-designed programs, but the essential fact that it treats transparency and accountability as foremost priorities,” he said.

The meeting was followed by a dinner with local Armenian community leaders including members of the St. Gregory the Illuminator Armenian Church Council.

On March 30, the last day of the UNDP delegation’s tour, a meeting with Dubai-Armenian business leaders was held at the conference hall of Dubai’s Al Bustan Hotel. The gathering was organized by Mr. Bob Parseghian of Dubai. In her address, Ms. Vidal likened the vibrancy of the local Armenian community to the dynamic economic path of Dubai itself, and invited the guests to apply their entrepreneurial vision to a long-term partnership with the UNDP.

“Our programs in Armenia are designed to create economic opportunity but also foster community-based development,” Ms. Vidal said. “This is a modality of development that ensures the well-being of Armenian society across the republic – in terms of education, vocational training, healthcare, employment, and environmental protection. We have been able to make strides in Armenia precisely because of the inclusive nature of our work, securing the collaboration of the government, private sector, international organizations, and, most importantly, the people of Armenia. I now urge you to join this wonderful process, both as individuals and a community.”

Throughout its tour in the Middle East, the UNDP delegation demonstrated its appreciation for its hosts by presenting them with handmade certificate-mementos. Created by Yerevan artist Ararat Sarkissian, the certificates feature the UN emblem and letters culled from the world’s alphabets, in celebration of the “Global Armenia” initiative and conveying the UN’s ongoing role in the advancement of humanity as a whole.

Source: United Nations Development Programme

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