“Civil Society Institute” NGO (CSI) has initiated hairdressing vocational training for female convicts who are serving their sentence at “Abovyan” penitentiary institution.
The initiative is carried out in the framework of the “Better Opportunities for Reintegration of Women Ex-prisoners” program with the financial support of the Embassy of the Republic of Lithuania in Armenia and in cooperation with the Penitentiary Department of the Ministry of Justice of RA and “Abovyan” penitentiary institution. The training is conducted by the professional trainer of the N6 State College of Crafts of Yerevan.
The program is aimed to help women prisoners to acquire profession and get a job and stable income after serving the term. The program has started on July 1, 2016. At present a training space is being repaired and furnished in cooperation with the administration of the institution. All the equipment, materials and supplies required for hairdressing courses will be provided for the beneficiaries of the project.
The workshop itself is due to start on July 1. In this pilot program10 female convicts soon-to-be-released will have the opportunity to participate. The participants, who successfully complete the hairdressing course and pass the final exam, will receive certificates from the N6 State College of Crafts of Yerevan.
The director of CSI NGO Anna Melikyan noted that the choice of the course, which is hairdressing, was not random. “The female convicts listed hairdressing in the five top professions they would like to learn. We have also researched the labor market in Armenia. It is very difficult for the women to return home and reintegrate into society after prison, yet many of them should take the responsibility for their family budgets. This profession will allow them to ensure stable income with the minimal investments”- notes Anna Melikyan.
More than 15 years “Civil Society Institute” NGO has operated in the field of penitentiary// penal system reforms.
“We have always stressed the importance of programs aimed at the rehabilitation and re-socialization of convicts. We hope, that in the future we will have an opportunity to expand such programs, which will allow us to involve more participants and also add other types of vocational trainings”- says the director of CSI.