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Displaced Syrian women produce non-medical masks to help host communities prevent COVID-19

“Refugees have skills and talents that only need a chance to grow and flourish. Within each piece lies a story of history and culture, and the chance for a person who has fled war and persecution to offer something of beauty and style to the world.”

 Filippo Grandi, UN High Commissioner for Refugees

The unprecedented spread of coronavirus in Armenia is driving the demand for face masks

A group of displaced Syrian women of “Nor Arev” sewing and alternations company managed by Ms. Vani Nalbandian, got wired for production of non-medical masks under the leadership of the Homeland Development Initiative Foundation membering World Trade Organisation.

These diligent women have joined the global mask production initiative introduced by UNHCR and its partner MADE51 promoting refugees’ self-reliance and women empowerment worldwide.

UNHCR, and Homeland Development Initiative Foundation visited the displaced women at work in the atelier at the ‘Industrial Zone’ provided to the Syrian Armenian Union NGO.

“Nor Arev gave me the opportunity to make some income and support my family. During these difficult days of emergency when people are in need of masks, I feel honoured that my skills and input can serve useful for the host community,” said one of the women while sewing a mask.