Mr. Zaven Khanjian’s Recent Visit to Instanbul, Turkey
During his recent visit to Istanbul Turkey in early June, Zaven Khanjian, AMAA Executive Director/CEO met with The Camp ARMEN Reconstruction Committee, visited the Hrant Dink Foundation, the offices of Nor Zartonk as well as the Armenian Patriarchate of Istanbul.
Agos Newspaper of Istanbul, founded by the late Hrant Dink, interviewed Mr. Khanjian who reflected upon the mission of the AMAA and its support for the reconstruction of Camp ARMEN. Interview in Turkish on Agos
Translation of interview:
AMAA Supports Camp ARMEN
Karin Bal 13.06.2016
The Armenian Missionary Association of America (AMAA) was established in 1918 to provide moral and material support to genocide survivors, orphans, and homeless families. AMAA director Zaven Khanjian, was in Istanbul in order to initiate Camp Armen’s reconstruction.
The Armenian Missionary Association of America (AMAA) was established in 1918 to provide moral and material support to the Genocide survivors, orphans, and homeless families. Today, AMAA maintains projects around the world extending a helping hand to Armenians in need. After a long struggle in 2015, Camp Armen was returned to the Armenian people. AMAA Executive Director/CEO, Zaven Khanjian came to Istanbul in order to rebuild the Camp. We talked to Khanjian to discuss this and AMAA’s other projects.
Zaven Khanjian, originally from Aleppo, Syria, emigrated to the United States in 1979. The purpose of his visit to Istanbul, summarizes as follows, “As Executive Director of AMAA, I want to help Armenians living around the world. I came to Istanbul, first to visit Camp ARMEN and to see its physical conditions. Then to exchange ideas with leading figures of the Armenian Community in Istanbul on the future plans of the Camp, reconstruction of the Camp and what can we do to return to the old days. We will meet with the Hrant Dink Foundation, in conjunction with a group of architects, and Pastor Kirkor Ağabaloğlu of the Armenian Evangelical Church of Gedik Paşa.“
Camp ARMEN’s mission is still valid
“Once reconstructed, AMAA wants the Camp to return to the old day.” said Khanjian, “Bringing Camp ARMEN to our children living in Anatolia who struggle with spiritual challenges and language, in order to teach them about their culture and religion was a very important mission. I believe that this tradition is still valid. Our children are still living in Anatolia with the same fate. Camp ARMEN can also serve a different purpose,” underscored Khanjian. “For example, this may be a cultural and educational institution not only for Armenian children living in Turkey, but around the world,” he said.
Khanjian stressed that education is very important for the progress of the society. He said, “Our main areas of mission are churches, clergy, and schools in the United States, Syria, Lebanon, and in Armenia. In addition we work on all kinds of issues related to housing. We help and provide in any ways we can help. We support our students attending universities with scholarships. We also do humanitarian work. For example we provided assistance to the victims of the earthquake in Armenia. Today we have a team working to help the victims of the violence in Syria. One of our main focus now is Syria. We help the basic needs of those who have migrated from there.”
Of special interest
The AMAA with donations and support of the Armenians in Diaspora sponsors several camps in Armenia and maintain five school in Karabakh. All projects AMAA carries out is about the legacy of Christianity. It provides internship programs to Armenian youth both in the United States and Armenia. Babies who cannot get milk from their mothers are provided with milk. Each year a team of 40 visit remote villages and settlements in Armenia to meet people’s health and medical needs.
2018 is the 100th anniversary of the establishment of the Armenian Missionary Association of America