AVC provides full-support to all of our volunteers, starting from the application period, to their time in country, and then later as they join our alumni family. Read below for a list of those services.
Enter Armenia in style! If you would like it, our driver will be waiting for you at the “Arrivals” section of Yerevan’s international airport with a sign bearing your name, ready to shake your hand, help carry your bags, and whisk you away to your home-stay location in Armenia. If you are not tired from the flight, we suggest you keep your eyes open during the car trip, so you can take in as much of Armenia as possible, as soon as possible!
Forums & Havaks
Generally weekly, AVC organizes two gatherings for its volunteers, where they can mix and mingle with one another away from their placements. Usually, volunteers assemble at the AVC office and travel together to the place where the gathering is being held. Most of these events are themselves held in the center of Yerevan, so the travel time from the AVC office to the event venue tends to be quite short.
By “forums,” we refer to the more serious extracurricular meetings. These could entail visiting an NGO, for instance. By “havaks,” we refer to the less formal get-togethers, which might be focused on wine-tasting or board games. We ultimately hope that both types of gatherings prove to be fun and educational, so that these optional outings enhance your stay in Armenia whenever you have the time to take advantage of them.
Some volunteers from the diaspora come to us already speaking the language fairly well; other volunteers, sometimes even including those in the diaspora, come to us knowing no Armenian. AVC offers language classes at a variety of levels twice a week, seeking to accommodate our volunteers wherever they may be on their language-learning journey. The classes are not mandatory, but they are highly recommended, being FREE and greatly increasing your chances of maximizing your enjoyment and productivity in Armenia.
On weekends, volunteers may pay a below-market-rate fee of 4000 AMD (based on the exchange rate, between 8 and 10 USD) to go on hours-long tours of locations in Armenia known for their natural beauty, cultural significance, or both. Lunch is included. AVC can offer these eye-opening getaways at such an affordable price because they are subsidized through our sister organization, Birthright Armenia.
Most AVC participants opt for a home-stay over arranging their own accommodation, and we wholeheartedly– and logistically– support them in this choice. Home-stays allow participants to live with Armenians and as Armenians do, naturally allowing them to practice the language and otherwise grow accustomed to the culture. Breakfast is included in the home-stay, and for additional fees dinner and laundry service at the home-stay are also available.
AVC and Birthright Armenia have a joint office located in the Kentron (“Center”) zone of Yerevan, right next to Republic Square, and it is open to our volunteers. We have some desktop computers available to volunteers and wireless internet we would happily give the password to for all our volunteers to use on their personal devices. We are, furthermore, ready to lend a listening ear and helping hand to volunteers in search of ways to enjoy their time in Armenia more.