The philosophy of Shahane Halajyan

“I decided to become a philosopher to understand myself and the world around me. That world kept growing bigger, it turned into a universe, and while I was trying to find myself, I got even lost instead,” she confesses with a smile.

“Whatever role you are given in life, you should try to fulfill it to the best of your ability,” she says, referring to the time she was teaching Armenian Culture at a local Armenian school in Amsterdam. She remembers that the Armenians, who had been in the Netherlands for a long time, spoke Armenian very well, while those who had moved there in recent years spoke Dutch. “Realizing the responsibility of my role, I understood how important it was to prepare for the class by doing the utmost.”

“I was about 22 — the youngest in the team — when I joined COAF as the Сivic Education Coordinator.”

“Once, when I was in Armenia for my summer break, I visited my grandpa’s house in Dsegh village and saw the sign about the upcoming construction of the COAF SMART Center in a place where I had spent my entire childhood, lying on the grass and reading books. Back then, nothing existed there, and all of a sudden, SMART was about to come. Being from Vanadzor myself, I knew how crucial it was for the region.”

“Many complain about our current generation, but I think we will have a demanding, enlightening generation that is skilled, informed, and knowledgeable. “The youth that comes out of the SMART center with dreams is the sprouts of that milestone in our communities,” she says.



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Children of Armenia Fund

Children of Armenia Fund

Children of Armenia Fund (COAF) is a non-profit organization that employs community-led approaches aimed at improving the quality of life in rural Armenia.