Resource rooms opened at several penitentiary institutions


Since September 2019, Armenia has been implementing a programme entitled “For the sake of human rights: education at penitentiary institutions”, the aim of which is to draw the public’s attention to fundamental issues related to the right to education at penitentiary institutions and support the implementation of educational initiatives.

Under this programme, the Ministry of Justice of the Republic of Armenia is co-operating with DVV International Armenia Country Office, which implements the programme with the financial support of the Ministry of Foreign Affairs of the Federal Republic of Germany. The two parties concluded a Memorandum of Co-operation on 3 August of this year.

Within the scope of small grants, partnering NGOs have repaired and furnished the resource rooms through work-based learning at “Nubarashen”, “Artik” and “Vardashen” Penitentiary Institutions. Overall, 66 convicts were involved in these activities.

All the resource rooms are equipped with the primary computer equipment (computers, projectors, computer screens) and necessary educational supplies (desks, chairs, bookshelves, books, flipcharts, etc.).

The opening ceremonies of resource rooms and the handing of certificates to the participants of courses were held with the participation of representatives of the Ministry of Justice of the Republic of Armenia and DVV International Armenia Country Office at “Nubarashen” Penitentiary Institution on 4 December, at “Artik” Penitentiary Institution on 11 December and at “Vardashen” Penitentiary Institution on 14 December.

During the year 2020, the “Education for Changes” competition for journalists was held within the scope of the programme and with the participation of journalists and convicts (including former convicts). Thirty-seven articles were submitted for the competition (23 by convicts, 14 by journalists). By the decision of the competition jury, after the award ceremony, all the participating convicts were granted gift packages, and those who received prizes (both journalists and convicts) were given monetary rewards.

The programme is also carried out in Belarus, Moldova and Ukraine, strengthening the institutional capacities of partnering NGOs and the International Network of Penitentiary Education in the countries of Eastern Partnership and Central Asia.