Recent Initiatives

TFA Member and IRF Graduates Organize Armenia’s First Dysphagia Conference

January 22, 2024

Our talented TFA member, Nathalie Halajian led a demonstration about cognitive evaluations and hospital bedside manners at the first ever Dysphagia Conference in Armenia organized by the Armenian Speech Therapy Association. Our IRF (Interdisciplinary Rehabilitation Fellowship) Medical Director, Dr Laura Movisyan, and IRF graduates Tatev Sargsyan, Anahit Mayiliyan, and Anush Babayan presented as well. Anush Babayan, Chairwoman of Armenian Speech Therapists’ Association, stated, “Thanks to IRF, I have a fantastic team. Tatev, Anahit, and Nathalie have become invaluable assets.”

We are so proud of our colleagues at the Armenian Speech Therapy Association and our member Nathalie Halajian for organizing Armenia’s first ever Dysphagia conference! 

Coloring Book Fundraiser in Glendale

December 23, 2023

Therapists for Armenia would like to recognize and thank our fundraising committee for organizing a fantastic fundraiser selling our one-of-a-kind coloring books! And a special thank you to our members Kristine Movsisian and Lusine Karapetyan for volunteering to help that day.

The sale took place at Grandview House Preschool in Glendale, CA where many parents learned about Therapists for Armenia for the first time. Nice job, ladies! We appreciate your time, effort, and commitment!

TFA Members Host Professional Development Event in Yerevan

December 2, 2023

On December 1, two of our SLPs, Kristine Movsisian and Nathalie Halajian, presented on communication and visual supports for autistic children with the staff of the Autism National Fund and My Way Educational and Developmental Centre in Yerevan, Armenia. This hybrid event welcomes over 30 participants, with 25 attendees joining in person. This is part of a growing collaboration since 2022. This is the second webinar we have hosted in partnership with My Way. The attendees were very appreciative, and we look forward to further collaboration! Watch our reel here!

TFA Donates Close to 200 Rehab Supplies to Burn Center

November 16, 2023

We are proud to announce that Therapists for Armenia has sent another batch of burn rehab supplies this week to the National Burn Center! Thank you to those who donated thus far as well as those who are helping with transporting these items from the USA to Armenia.

This donation included:

  • 78 Compression gloves
  • 45 Compression socks
  • 10 Packs of silicone scar gel
  • 10 Post-surgery face masks
  • Shoulder abduction brace
  • Hinged knee brace
  • 2 Ankle Foot Orthoses (AFO)
  • Back Brace

To date we have sent close to 200 supplies with your support!

Guest Lecture for St. Joseph’s University’s Occupational Therapy Students

November 12, 2023

Thanks to a partnership made at the 2022 WFOT Congress, TFA Founding Director, V. Armineh Babikian, was invited to be a guest lecture in the Clinical Management and Supervision course at Saint Joseph’s University’s Masters in Occupational Therapy Program. She presented on her entrepreneurial journey of starting a nonprofit organization and discussed the importance of program evaluation and quality improvement strategies. Students were then tasked to recommend novel approaches and models for Therapists for Armenia’s upcoming initiatives. “It was great learning for all!” reflected Armineh.

Armenian Language Rehab Resources for Artsakh Burn Victims

October 20, 2023

In addition to the donation of burn care supplies, we have also translated resources related to burn care rehabilitation including occupational and physiotherapy approaches, stretches, exercises, and scar massage techniques. These will help to maintain muscle integrity, increase range of motions, and decrease the appearance of scars.

These materials also help to increase access to rehabilitation support as there is only one physiotherapist in Armenia who specializes in burn care rehabilitation, and she works at the National Burn Center. All remaining patients being seen at other hospitals or clinics do not have access to rehabilitation services during their stay. With these handouts, they can still benefit from rehabilitation.

World Health Organization Armenia Rehabilitation national office has also commended us on our resources, stating that they will help to build capacity in this field. “Thank you for your dedication and unwavering support” – Zhanna Harutyunyan, World Health Organization (WHO) Armenia Rehabilitation National Professional Officer

World Mental Health Day

October 10, 2023

Now more than ever, we are grateful for World Mental Health Day 2023. This year’s campaign theme is “mental health is a universal human right- our mind our right.” Having access to mental health resources is crucial especially with the forced displacement of the Armenian people of Artsakh and the ongoing humanitarian crisis we’re experiencing. Everyone has the right to access mental health care. Stigmas and discrimination of others can lead to violation of those rights. Check out the FREE resources in our clinical resource library.

TFA Leads Burn Rehabilitation Donations for the National Burn Center in Yerevan

October 6, 2023

Our amazing TFA member and speech language pathologist, Maral Firkatian Wozniak, hand delivered our donations to the National Burn Center in Yerevan to support burn rehabilitation of the gas station explosion victims from September 25th. We were able to provide:

  • 5 tubes of silicone scar gel
  • 5 boxes of hydrocolloid wound dressing (10 packs each)
  • 12 rolls of silicone scar sheets (150” each)
  • 5 packs of compression socks
  • 5 packs of compression gloves

These were a portion of the items requested by the National Burn Center physiotherapist and IRF graduate, Armenuhi Poghosyan, in order to promote tissue healing, maintain muscle integrity, and reduce scarring. She is the only burn rehabilitation specialist in the country.

Watch a short video here.

Visit to Head Office of the Republican Pedagogical-Psychological Center of Armenia

September 9, 2023

Over the summer we had the opportunity to meet with Lilit Mnatsakanyan, director of the Republican Pedagogical-Psychological Center of Armenia or the ՀՄԿ – Հանրապետական մանկավարժահոգեբանական կենտրոն. These centers are the implementing body of all inclusive education programs in the country. There is one center in each region providing evaluations, assessments, and individualized educational plans to leaners with unique needs and or in need of additional support. During our meeting, we discussed ways to support their efforts through sustainable approaches by strengthening capacity in regions with low resources and providing guidance related to assistive technology and classroom modifications. As we are already working with the center in the Lori Region, we are looking forward to expanding this collaboration further to support participation of all learners in Armenia!

Visit to We Can NGO in Yerevan

August 25, 2023

Last month we had the opportunity to visit We Can NGO/ «Մենք Կարող ենք» ՀԿ , one of our partner organizations in Yerevan. We Can or Մենք Կարող Ենք ՀԿ is a non-governmental Organization based in Yerevan focusing on the protection of rights of youth and children with intellectual disabilities and their family members. We joined their inclusive summer sessions which consist of creative activities that bring together youth with and without disabilities, siblings, and caregivers. Watch a video of their music activity here.

For the past year we have had the pleasure of learning from them to support disability advocacy in Armenia. We are also helping to put together resources related to sexual education and rights.

Together We Can have a more inclusive society! Thank you, We Can, for your important contributions!

TFA Helps Secure a Grant to Support Gyumri’s First Inclusive Playground

August 9, 2023

We are so excited to visit Gyumri’s first inclusive playground at the Emili Aregak Center! We played a small role in helping to get sensory equipment for this space and it is finally becoming a reality! This playground will have wheelchair accessible swings, elevated sand boxes, a trampoline, sensory stations, and more. It will be a safe space for all children to explore and play together!

Watch our reel!

28 IRF Fellows Graduate

July 15, 2023

Our first cohort of IRF Fellows graduated and received certificates from the National Institute of Health (NIH) of Armenia! Congratulatory speeches were given by IRF Co-founders, Armineh Babikian and Nicholas Tavoukjian, Armen Nazaryan, Deputy Minister of Health of Armenia, Dr. Samson Khachatryan, Deputy Director of Science of NIH Armenia, Arman Voskerchyan, Co-Founder and Chairman of the Board of Trustees of HENAR, Vardan Tadevosyan, Minister of Healthcare of Artsakh, and Zhanna Harutunyan, WHO Armenia National Consultant of Rehabilitation and Assistive Technology. IRF Founding team was also surprised with certificates from the NIH. It was a beautiful event with smiles from all!

We are so incredibly proud of the fellows and their accomplishments. We are confident they will continue to be leaders in the field and change-makers of the region!

IRF Fellows Present Capstones to Rehab Stakeholders

July 14, 2023

As a final step before graduation, our 28 fellows presented their capstone projects at the National Institute of Health (NIH) of Armenia! What a journey these fellows have undergone these past 10 months, culminating in 7 capstone projects targeting sustainable development of rehabilitation in Armenia and Artsakh.

Projects included:

  • Home Health Rehabilitation
  • Experiences with the ICF model
  • Prevalence of Pressure Ulcers in Artsakh
  • Telerehabilitation
  • Professional Development of Speech Therapists
  • Rehabilitation in Emergencies

Fellows presented their work to invited stakeholders, rehabilitation colleagues, peers, and IRF partners. The event concluded with congratulatory remarks by IRF co-founders, Armineh Babikian and Nicholas Tavoukjian, Dean of Medical Faculty at NIH Armenia, Gohar Yerimyan, CEO of Polaris EduCorp and President of WorldPhysio, Dr. Michel Landry, and IRF Medical Director, Dr. Laura Movsisyan. So proud of you all and we will continue to support you as you lead the changes within the Armenian rehabilitation and healthcare systems. Շատ ապրեք բոլորդ

Watch a short video here.

TFA & AASMC Donate Equipment to Armenian PT University

July 13, 2023

The final IRF in-person week was graciously hosted by the Armenian State Institute for Physical Culture and Sport. As a thank you for their dedication to rehabilitation, IRF co-founders donated therapeutic equipment for the physiotherapy students as well as copies of the Occupational Therapy Guidebook to Inclusion. Donations included:

  • 6 gait belts
  • 6 pulse oximeters
  • 6 blood pressure cuffs
  • 6 wheelchair cushions
  • 6 sliding boards
  • 2 large rolls of theraband

TFA Member Teaches Tai Chi to IRF Fellows

July 11, 2023

TFA member and physical therapist, Adrineh Mehdikhani, hosted a Tai Chi workshop for our Interdisciplinary Rehabilitation Fellowship for Armenia and Artsakh. She discussed on the evidence-based health benefits on fall reduction joint health and overall well-being, and ways to incorporate Tai Chi into rehabilitation. Fellows greatly enjoyed the session and were eager to begin including these strategies into their practices. Thank you, Adrineh, for your time and dedication! 

TFA Sponsors Armenian PT to Present at Conference

July 9, 2023

We are so proud to have been able to sponsor the conference attendance and provide guidance for the abstract submission of our IRF (Interdisciplinary Rehabilitation Fellowship for Armenia & Artsakh) fellow and PT colleague Anna Martirosyan. She presented her group’s IRF capstone proposal on telerehabilitation in Armenia. She did an amazing job presenting to the international audience at the 6th International Medical Congress of Armenia (6IMCA).

Abris Anna, Asped, and Anahit and congratulations on your abstract publication!

IRF Poster Presentation at the 6th International Medical Congress of Armenia

July 7, 2023

TFA had a scientific poster about the Interdisciplinary Rehabilitation Fellowship (IRF) at the 6IMCA HENAR Primary Care Satellite Symposium to advocate for the role of rehabilitation within primary care, emergency medicine, and post-conflict contexts.

TFA Advocates to International Rehabilitation Agencies to Support Artsakh

June 20, 2023

Since December 12, over 120,000 Armenians, including 9,000 with disabilities, have been cut off from the rest of the world. We sent letters to the international governing agencies of our professions and international humanitarian aid organizations requesting that they:

  • Call on their connection in Azerbaijan to unblock the Lachin Corridor in order to enable the transfer of patients and medicine to and from Artsakh
  • Protect the people of Artsakh who found themselves in a health emergency through humanitarian aid, medical supplies, and support for healthcare service provision
  • Ensure the wellbeing of the people of Artsakh.

We stand with the people of Artsakh and advocate for the protection of their human rights to have access to health, education, and food.

TFA presents at ACMAO’s 35th Anniversary Gala

June 4, 2023

A special thank you to the Armenian Medical Canadian Association of Ontario for inviting us to celebrate their 35th anniversary. It was so wonderful to learn about all the important work they have contributed to over the past 3 decades from mobile clinics to medical supplies to educational programs. Their dedication to projects in Artsakh is truly aspiring. A portion of the proceeds from their gala will be donated to Therapists for Armenia and we are so incredibly grateful for their support and generosity! Thank you to the organizers and donors!

Watch our presentation here.

Guest Speaker Presents on Armenian AAC App

May 17, 2023

In honor of Better Speech and Hearing Month, we invited Speech Language Pathologist and co-founder of Harmony Speech and Diagnostics, Taline Ashekian M.S. CCC-SLP/ASDCS, to present to TFA members about her role in developing the ARMAV App. The ARMAV App is the first Armenian language Augmentative and Alternative Communication (AAC) software. AAC supports those who are non-verbal communicate with a voice. In her presentation Ms. Ashekian outlined what AAC is, the development of the Western Armenian vocabulary in the ARMAV app, creation of the icons, voice recordings, and who can benefit from the use of the app. The ARMAV App provides 4 voices, because each individual can require different voice options. It also provides the opportunity to enlarge the vocabulary of the App, providing each individual the opportunity of having specific words for his/her communication. The App can be used for both face to face and distance communication. It is available in Eastern and Western Armenian for free in your app store. We were so grateful to have Ms. Ashekian present to the TFA team!

IRF Fellows Review Independent Living & Assistive Technology

May 4, 2023

Lori Pogarian, MS, CCC-SLP, and Kelsey Lanman, MS, OTR/L (Spaulding Rehabilitation Hospital), led the clinical instruction this month on independent living and assistive technology in our Interdisciplinary Rehabilitation Fellowship. Topics covered includes cognitive-linguistic testing, guidelines for referring patients to the speech-language pathologist, the Montreal Cognitive Assessment (MOCA), and methods of evaluation for transitioning patients home and back into their community. Cognition, speech, and communication are vital to facilitating independence and functioning in patients recovering from traumatic brain injury, stroke, brain tumors, Alzheimer’s disease, and more.

Fun fact – the MOCA has been translated and validated in the Armenian language, and is commonly used by rehabilitation professionals in Armenia and Artsakh!

TFA Launches Interdisciplinary Case Discussion Event with Lori Region

April 30, 2023

On April 30th Therapists for Armenia launched a new initiative entitled Collaborative Learning and Brainstorming (CoLAB). During this virtual, cross-disciplinary case discussion event, TFA partnered with the Stepanavan Regional Pedagogical Psychological Support Center (Ստեփանավանի տարածքային մանկավարժահոգեբանական աջակցության կենտրոն) in the Lori Region to discuss the case of a 12-year-old child with Cerebral Palsy in a school setting, along with ways to promote inclusive education. TFA members, the child, his family, and over 60 members from education and rehabilitation sectors across the United States and Armenia consulted on ways to improve participation in school, functional mobility, posture, breath control, and play for the child.

IRF Fellow and SLP Anyush Babayan reflects on her experience in the fellowship

April 28, 2023

IRF fellow and a speech therapist Anyush Babayan believes that the advancement of rehabilitation services holds immense significance for our region. Watch this video of Anyush discussing her appreciation for the program, how she learned about it, and her most cherished professional experiences.

IRF Interdisciplinary Rehabilitation Fellowship for Armenia & Artsakh is the first Armenian post-graduate education program targeting post-conflict and adult rehabilitation services. The program is carried out by Therapists for Armenia and Armenian American Sports Medicine Coalition with support from HENAR – Health Network for Armenia, National Institute of Health (NIH) Armenia (Առողջապահության Ազգային Ինստիտուտ) and Polaris EduCorp.

TFA Member Hosts Webinar with Autism Center in Yerevan

April 20, 2023

In support of Autism Acceptance Month, TFA member and Speech Language Pathologist Kristine Movsisian M.S. CCC-SLP/GC-ASD, presented a webinar on the topic of Communication & Behavior Management with My Way Rehabilitation and Educational Centre located in Yerevan, Armenia. Kristine works full-time in the elementary school setting in Los Angeles with moderate to severely challenged students. In her presentation, she discussed the strategies and techniques used to manage challenging behaviors through teaching effective functional communication skills. Kristine reflected, “I was honored to present to the group of esteemed individuals at My Way.”

Great work, Kristine! 👏👏

TFA Visits Equal Rights Equal Opportunity NGO to Discuss Disability Advocacy in Armenia

April 10, 2023

Therapists for Armenia director Armineh Babikian visited EREO NGO in Vanadzor, Armenia and got a tour of the first independent living center in Armenia. With EREO founder, Anush Aslanyan, they discussed the importance of disability advocacy for and with people with disabilities, the distinction between independent living centers and rehabilitation centers, and exchanged resources. Babikian donated two copies of the Occupational Therapy Guidebook to Inclusion to their resource library.

TFA Supports Inclusive Education in Stepanavan, Lori  in Armenia Through Adaptive Equipment Donations and Training

April 1, 2023

On March 16th, our founder and executive director, Armineh Babikian, joined Lori region’s inclusive education team consisting of 31 special educators, psychologists, speech therapists, and social workers. The Lori region has the second highest prevalence of childhood disability in Armenia. 

“It was such a pleasure to be welcomed to the Secondary School Number 2 and the regional psychopedagogical support center, which services 44 schools. Through my volunteer work over the past 6 years and Therapists for Armenia, I have crossed paths with several of these specialists already. Every regional center in Armenia has received copies of my Occupational Therapy Guidebook to Inclusion thanks to Worldvision Armenia. Now we are collaborating to help the team implement occupational therapy strategies into their inclusive education efforts, as there is no occupational therapist in the whole region. We will continue to partner with them, provide multidisciplinary support and exchange experiences.”

Thank you to all who donated to the school supply donation drive. Because of your support we were able to donate:

  • 33 chair bands 
  • 160 readers 
  • 210 colored pencils 
  • 190 regular pencils 
  • 216 pencil grips 
  • 96 mini adaptive scissors
  • 51 large adaptive scissors 
  • 50 spring scissors 
  • 4 bumpy cushions 

Together we will make this a more inclusive world! For now we are starting with the beautiful Lori Region.

TFA and AASMC Present IRF at 6IMCA Pre-Conference

April 1, 2023

IRF co-founders Armineh Babikian and Nicholas Tavoukjian gave an overview of the IRG development, goals, structure, and accomplishments at the 6IMCA Medical Education Pre-Conference Roundtable. Watch the presentation here at the 30 minute mark!

Reflections from IRF Fellow & OT, Laura Iskandaryan

March 31, 2023

IRF fellow & occupational therapist Laura Iskandaryan stumbled upon her field by accident, but fell in love with the profession. In this video Laura shares her thoughts about the fellowship, her profession and her most favorite aspects of it. Watch the video here on our YouTube channel.

IRF Fellows Perform Site Assessments Across Yerevan

March 25, 2023

In March of 2023, fellows from the Interdisciplinary Rehabilitation Fellowship (IRF) met for their second in-person segment after 5 months of virtual learning. A total of 26 fellows from Armenia and 4 fellows from Artsakh (who joined virtually due to the ongoing blockade), reviewed topics related to orthopedics, neurorehabilitation, wound care & burns, and acute care. 

Fellows visited rehab centers and hospitals to observe and analyze transitions of care and interdisciplinary coordination of care. They demonstrated clinical interventions for orthopedic, neurological and burn cases. In addition, the fellows selected their capstone projects for rehab development in Armenia & Artsakh- some examples include research studies of current rehab processes, development of professional associations, creating rehab in emergencies plan, and more. 

We can’t wait to see the impact our fellows will continue to have in strengthening the rehabilitation and health system in Armenia and Artsakh. 

TFA Invited to Discuss PT Curriculum Modifications at the Armenian State Institute of Physical Culture and Sport 

March 24, 2023

While in Armenia in March, TFA executive director Armineh Babikian, was invited to the Armenian State Institute of Physical Culture and Sport Physical Therapy Department roundtable discussion about how to modify and improve the physical therapy curriculum. Many great ideas and suggestions were exchanged. Things are moving in the right direction and it was wonderful to see changes led by our own IRF Fellow & PT Department Chairman Gevorg Nalbandyan.

IRF Fellows Review Cognition and Transitions of Care

March 22, 2023

We had a smooth start to our fellowship week! IRF fellows are now in month 6 of the fellowship, with our second in person intensive learning week in Armenia. 30 leaders in rehabilitation from Armenia and Artsakh spent the first day engaging with material in and discussing: transitions of Care in Post-Conflict Rehabilitation, cognitive evaluations, & complex orthopedic case studies.

We will continue the theme of care through the continuum throughout the week. We are very excited about the progress our fellows are making in demonstrating their ability to work in multidisciplinary teams, concisely and accurately communicating clinical cases, evaluating Armenia’s rehabilitation system, and brainstorming solutions to drive change!

Reflections of the IRF from Physiotherapy Fellow, Asped Kelkhacherian

March 6, 2023

IRF fellow & physiotherapist Asbed Kelkhacherian tells about the most valuable aspects of the fellowship, his job and what he enjoys most about it. The Interdisciplinary Rehabilitation Fellowship (IRF) for Armenia & Artsakh is the first Armenian post-graduate education program targeting post-conflict and adult rehabilitation services. Watch the video here on our YouTube channel.

TFA Presents webinar to Vanadzor’s Equal Rights, Equal Opportunity (EREO)

February 28, 2023

In February TFA proudly hosted a webinar for Equal Rights, Equal Opportunity (EREO) NGO based in Vanadzor, Armenia. The webinar took was on the following topic: “The Role of Rehabilitation in Independent Living.” Three of our very own members, Lusine Karapetyan (PT), Maral Firkatian Wozniak (SLP), and Armineh Babikian (OT), presented on the cross-disciplinary role of rehabilitation as it relates to independence, and how occupational, physical, and speech therapy can be a resource for people with disabilities. We thank each of you for your contribution to a wonderful and invigorating event!

TFA Members Teaching Rehab for Orthopedics & Amputation in the IRF

January 4, 2023

Our Interdisciplinary Rehabilitation Fellowship (IRF) is a 10 month post-professional program for rehabilitation clinicians in Armenia and Artsakh. This month two of our very own TFA members, Jen Thompson and Lusine Karapetyan, led the module on Orthopedics, Amputation, Prosthetics & Orthotics. 

Jen Thompson is an occupational therapist at the Spaulding Rehabilitation Hospital Cape Cod who specializes in limb loss rehabilitation. Jen led a riveting discussion on prosthetic training and provided explanations on parts of a prosthetic, safety and well-being, and interdisciplinary collaboration. Jen is also the Advocacy and Marketing Coordinator at Therapists for Armenia and is very passionate about supporting Armenian rehab development! 

Our TFA board member and Fundraising Coordinator, Lusine Karapetyan, introduced the IRF’s Orthopedic module. Lusine is a physical therapist and professor at Concorde Career College.  She presented on topics including arthritis, fractures, and World Health Organization (WHO) guidelines for physical activity. 

Thank you, Jen and Lusine, for your educational support and contribution to the fellowship program! 

Launch of the Interdisciplinary Rehabilitation Fellowship for Armenia & Artsakh

October 21, 2022

On October 10, 2022, Therapists for Armenia welcomed the first cohort of the IRF Interdisciplinary Rehabilitation Fellowship for Armenia & Artsakh, co-developed by Therapists for Armenia and Armenian American Sports Medicine Coalition (AASMC), with support from partners National Institute of Health Armenia, Polaris EduCorp, and Health Network for Armenia (HENAR). Our fellows come from various regions of Armenia and Artsakh, representing medicine, physical therapy, occupational therapy, and speech language pathology. Of the 92 applicants, 30 were selected as representatives of Armenian rehabilitation leadership to participate in the first ever post-professional interdisciplinary rehab program for post-conflict needs. This is a 10-month hybrid program that focuses on rehab from emergencies through the continuum of care to community reintegration.

After two years of planning, developing, and collaborating we finally reached the launch in Yerevan! At the Opening Ceremony, co-founders Armineh Babikian and Nick Tavoukjian discussed their vision of the sustainable program that can:

  • Build workforce capacity
  • Address post-conflict and adult care needs
  • Improve research, leadership and teaching skills, and
  • Enhance interdisciplinary coordination of care.

Special thank you to the partners and fellows. We are so excited to learn together and embark on this journey to improve the quality and access of rehabilitation services, ultimately improving quality of life for Armenians. Congratulations to everyone involved!

Another special thank you to our sponsors Armenian American Medical Society, Glendale Memorial Health Foundation, Dignity Health – Glendale Memorial Hospital (Glendale, CA).

TFA Presents at WFOT Congress in Paris, France

September 5, 2022

On Tuesday, August 30th, TFA founder and executive director, Armineh Babikian, and TFA Advocacy and Marketing Coordinator, Jennifer Thompson, presented at the World Federation of Occupational Therapists 2022 Congress in Paris, France. Over 2,500 participants from more than 100 countries joined the Congress, either virtually or in-person. The Congress provided a range of content spanning the occupational therapy profession. 

Babikian and Thompson’s presentation was titled “Innovation from America to Armenia: Providing Remote Education for Rehabilitation Clinicians in Armenia Treating Acquired Amputation During Post-Armed Conflict.” They described their post-conflict webinar series, outcomes, challenges, and future plans to support development of rehabilitation services in Armenia and Artsakh. The presentation was well received, and they have since been approached by colleagues from Ukraine interested in utilizing TFA resources. We congratulate Armineh and Jennifer on their success, and thank them for representing TFA and Armenian rehab at this large platform.

Watch their presentation here.

Supporting Mental Health of Armenian Soldiers

May 10, 2022

For the 2021 holiday season, Therapists for Armenia collaborated with Vardan Harutunyan (Yerevan-based photographer and soldier of 2020 Artsakh War) and Frontline Therapists (nonprofit organization providing free mental health services to Armenian soldiers and their families). Together we create unique calendars with images of Armenian landscapes, which were sold as a fundraiser to support rehabilitation efforts for Armenians impacted by the 2020 Artsakh War. We were able to donate $700 to Frontline Therapists to support their efforts in providing much needed mental health services. Thank you to everyone who purchased a calendar and donated towards this cause!

TFA Hosts Journal Club

February 26, 2022

Therapists for Armenia hosted a virtual Journal Club on Saturday, February 26th. The small-group Journal Club setting is geared towards exercising our ability to dive into interesting research articles and pull apart pertinent information for clinical application. This event was a big success!  We had participants from multiple specialties based in North America and Armenia. The session reviewed a research article that explored the medical aspects of COVID-19 that relate to rehabilitation. As a group, we discussed the main points of the article and collaborated on a case study about a patient suffering from long-haul COVID symptoms. The perspectives from all clinicians made for great discussions on how we all used evidence-based practice and individual practice patterns.

Post-Conflict Rehabilitation Virtual Symposium

December 28, 2021

On July 17th and 18th, 2021 Therapists for Armenia collaborated with the Armenian American Sports Medicine Coalition and the International Center of Professional Development to host the first ever Post-Conflict Rehabilitation Virtual Symposium in order to further advance the rehabilitation field in Armenia and promote international collaboration. The two-day event included international speakers from renown institutions such as the World Health Organization, Columba University, Duke University, University of Toronto, and the American Physical Therapy Association. This was the first ever multidisciplinary rehabilitation conference targeting post-war injuries. We welcomed over 430 participants from eight countries. Armenian CME were provided and presentations were available in both English and Armenian. The symposium was very well received and we look forward to further collaboration and efforts to support capacity-building for Armenia’s system and infrastructure. The recording of the presentations can be found in our Webinar section. Log in or create a free account to access.

Read more about this event in the following publications: The Armenian Mirror-Spectator; Նոյյան տապան; Օրեր; Ararat News; Արդարություն; InfoPort; Երկիր; NewInfo; Արավոտ

Lots of Socks for Emili Aregak Center

June 17, 2021

Therapists for Armenia observed World Down Syndrome Day (March 21) and World Autism Awareness Day (April 2) by designing and selling one-of-a-kind Armenian Inclusion socks. The three arrows represent the three chromosomes of Down Syndrome and a rainbow infinity symbol represents the neurodiversity of Autism Spectrum Disorder. These images were adapted to create our own symbols of inclusion and Armenian pride. The socks and accompanying brochures were made in Armenia. As a result of this campaign, $750 was donated to Emili Aregak Center in Gyumri, a developmental center for children with disabilities, and 10 pairs of socks were donated to be sold at the Aregak Bakery, the first inclusive bakery in Armenia which employs people with disabilities. Socks are still for sale in the Merchandise section, if you are interested in our unique foot-warmers!

Activity Book for Children Impacted by War

February 24, 2021

During the Artsakh war, Therapists for Armenia created and donated 8,000 activity books for displaced children. Coloring is a very soothing activity and promotes development. It can improve coordination, visual skills, and concentration. Over 30 Armenian artists from around the world submitted their creations and occupational therapists converted the images into educational activities. This resulted in over 40 unique counting, cutting, and learning pages. After printing in Yerevan, books were donated to organizations providing humanitarian relief including Kooyrigs, Children of Armenia Fund, All for Armenia, and Armenian Relief Society, who delivered the books to families in need throughout Armenia and Artsakh.

Armenian Social Stories

February 22, 2021

Inclusion and accessibility are very important to us. We translated social stories by Autism Little Learners in order to help Armenians of all needs understand complex topics such as social distancing, remote learning, grief, and coping skills. You can go to our Community Resources section to download them!

COVID-19 Art Drive

February 19, 2021

Armenian Nursing and Rehabilitation Center in New Jersey was hit hard by COVID 19. Over 50% of their residents passed away in a matter of months. We launched a project asking for artwork to help decorate the walls and cheer up the residents. Dozens are Armenian artists responded! Artwork was rotated on a monthly basis to avoid overwhelming the residents. It brought smiles to many faces!

* If you are interested in partnering with us for a community initiative, please complete our "Contact us" form.

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