The speakers of the discussion were Armenuhi Davtyan, Chief Specialist of Social Assistance Regional Agency of Goris, Syunik Regional Administration, Garegin Parsyan, Chief Architect of Goris city, Hermine Shalunts, Director of Goris Regional Pedagogical and Psychological Support Center, Elmira Balasanyan, Chairman of “Bari Yert” NGO, Naira Mkrtchyan, Chief Specialist of Goris Employment Regional Center, Heghine Arzumanyan, Special Teacher of #3 School of Goris, Armine Hovakimyan, Head of the Board of Women Development Resource Center of Goris, Jasmen Khachatryan, Director of Primary School #2 in Goris, Head of "New Generation" NGO.
2000 people with disabilities live in the region of Goris today.
Armenuhi Davtyan says that the number of people with a first-class disability is 137, second-class - 930 people, third class - 560, while the number of people with childhood disabilities is 88.
Elmira Balasanyan assesses the level of integration of people with disabilities to be very low in Goris.
“If we assessed in 5 point scale, I would say 3. The society is not ready to accept them and the appropriate structures, NGOs and citizens have much work to do here. Each of us should help and support these people to find their place,” Balasanyan said.
Naira Mkrtchyan says that 33 people with disabilities are registered in Goris employment center 7 of whom are women.
“They are mainly Artsakh war veterans. We have programs in which we always include persons with disabilities. 20% of registered persons with disabilities have high education, 20% have vocational and the remaining 60 have secondary education. The problem is that the job and employers' requirements should be competable with their professional qualifications and skills,” Mkrtchyan said, adding that there are no serious problems with employers in Goris, and they employ people with disabilities if they have the required professional qualities.
Armine Hovakimyan says that integrated social services are not integrated in Goris.
“It is a model that systematically assesses the family's needs and perform certain actions are developed for each organization. Our society seems to be a lot more sorry for these people. But this attitude should not be, they need more support not based on pity but on humanity. And that is lacking in our society,” Hovakimyan said.
Hermine Shalunts says that the primary obstacle in the field of inclusive education both in schools and kindergartens is the financial support.
“There are no conditions to provide for the children in need of special conditions of education. Both schools and primary schools must have ramps outside and inside the buildings but they do not have. There are no facilities, gyms are not adjusted, there is a resource room where they can work with such children. There are no equipments for children with special education. The continuous training of professionals is a necessity,” the speaker says and adds that there is a lack of trained professionals at schools in Goris.
Garegin Parsyan confirms that no school or kindergarten has such facilities which is a serious problem.
“The city should be adapted to the people with disabilities. The central parts of Goris have some facilities for people with disabilities for about 40-50%,” Parsyan said and added that the problem is more serious in the territories of educational establishments.
Jasmen Khachatryan says that she accepts children with disabilities in her kindergarten but there are some others that lead such people to special schools.
“We have children with visual disabilities, children who need logopeds and locomotor problems. But I must say that there are no conditions for a tutor or a teacher to care about such people as there are 30 children in groups and others will suffer. At least one primary school in our region must be established with the relevant staff of educators for children to attend,” Khachatryan said.
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