Grant Life charity fund will continue its activities, assures Director
YEREVAN, MAY 21, ARMENPRESS. Grant Life Armenian charitable foundation will continue operating and will direct its potential for saving the lives of Armenian children suffering from cancer and blood diseases, Director of the Foundation Verjine Voskanyan told reporters on May 21, commenting on the reports about the termination of the Foundation’s activity, Armenpress reports.
“After the domestic political changes some technical things have changed in the Foundation’s activity. We only temporarily suspended our activity. But this didn’t mean that the funding for beneficiary children would stop, we just were not going to take new beneficiaries. But this created a panic among many parents and kids. And this was the reason that the Board of Trustees gathered and made a decision that nothing will be frozen”, Verjine Voskanyan said.
Asked if there isn’t the word of the chairperson of the Board of Trustees at the status of the First lady (honorary chairwoman of the Foundation’s Board of Trustees is Rita Sargsyan, wife of the third President of Armenia), whether the financial flows will be in the same way, whether the major taxpayers will transfer money or not, she said that they did the temporary freeze for understanding these issues. “We did that to understand how the money will be collected from now on. We will adopt a new policy and will understand how we are going to ensure the flows. But we will not stop anything, there will be financial flows”, Voskanyan said, adding that they will apply to Rita Sargsyan and will propose her to remain in the Board of Trustees.
An urgent meeting by the initiative of Armenian Prime Minister’s spouse Anna Hakobyan was held on May 17 with the participation of the representatives of children's oncology and hematology charitable foundations and specialists. During the meeting issues relating to the children’s cancer and blood diseases and their short-term and long-term solution ways were discussed. The Grant Life Foundation has not been invited to the meeting. Member of the Board of Trustees of the Fund Shushanik Arevshatyan said they probably have not been invited due to the reports that the Fund has been closed. Asked whether PM’s wife Anna Hakobyan will be included in the Board, Arevshatyan said they are enough with their current staff. “During that meeting Anna Hakobyan said that she has no plans to become a chairperson, but expressed readiness to assist if needed”, Arevshatyan said.
She called on not to politicize the charity. It causes panic among many families. “Previously Rita Sargsyan at the status of the First Lady was sending letters to the businessmen aimed at assisting sick kids. We were receiving funds that comprised 20-30% of the Fund’s money. But now we don’t know what responses will be received if the same letter are sent. Therefore, we have decided to suspend the activity for some time”, Arevshatyan said, adding that they will apply to receive medical grants and will try to find a lot of funds.
Grant Life Foundation was founded in December 2009 with the support of the Russian "Grant Life" Foundation. The goal of the Fund is to help children with Oncology, Hematology and other serious diseases.
Spouse of the 3rd President of Armenia Rita Sargsyan became the honorary chairperson of the Board of Trustees of the Fund in 2010.
English –translator/editor: Aneta Harutyunyan