Who We Are
|Armenian Women for Health and Healthy Environment (AWHHE) is a non governmental organization (NGO) and a national network of focal points working for sustainable development, protection of human health and environment and poverty reduction in close partnership with international environmental and health networks such as Women in Europe for a Common Future (WECF), Women for Water Partnership (WfWP), International POPs Elimination Network (IPEN), Health Care Without Harm (HCWH), Global Anti-Incineration Alliance (GAIA), Pesticide Action Network Europe (PAN Europe) and Health Environment Alliance (HEAL).
Structure of Organization
The AWHHE NGO was founded in 1999. The mission of AWHHE is to explore the issue of environment pollution in Armenia, to advocate the human right to live in healthy environment, to promote the decrease of the risks of environmental harmful impacts, including climate change, on human health, as well to promote healthy lifestyle focusing especially on children and women. Particularly the concern for health and safety of children and future generation is an important motivation for women to become catalysts of a change.
AWHHE promotes the solution of the problems related to health and environment through education and information campaigns on awareness-raising about the environmental health threats and social injustice related to the environmental pollution; provides independent monitoring and investigations on water supply management and other related issues; lobbies the decision-makers to make sound solutions; contributes to capacity building of rural communities; strengthens the participation of women in decision making at local and national levels; promotes the implementation of Stockholm Convention on Persistent Organic Pollutants (POPs) in Armenia; publishes popular-scientific articles; creates information materials, organizes and participates in international and national conferences and forums.
AWHHE works towards 3 long-term goals to reach the overarching goal, i.e. to contribute to the implementation of Millennium Development Goals 1, 3, 7 aimed at promoting poverty eradication and sustainable development in rural areas.
Safe Chemicals for all
Contribute to the implementation of Strategic Approach to International Chemicals Management (SAICM) (raising awareness on the sound waste management) and the Stockholm Convention by promoting the elimination of the banned and obsolete pesticides in Armenia
Safe water and sanitation for all
Reduce health risks associated with water contamination through construction of ecological sanitation toilets in schools and for households and through improvement of water supply system
Safe food production and rural development for all
Support the organic farming and the usage of natural preparations for treatment of plants in villages
Promotion of gender equality and empowerment of women
Increase balanced participation of women and men in policy making and empowering women
The high professionalism of NGO members, their great experience and dedication served as a strong basis for the development of a number of project proposals and their further successful implementation.
In early 90s the POPs problem was recognized by the world community as a global ecological problem that poses a serious threat to human health and the environment. AWHHE has been a leading NGO in advocacy process for ratification and further implementation of POPs treaty by the government of Armenia . Organizational representatives are independent experts for National Implementation Plan of Armenia of POPs Convention.
AWHHE implemented 4-stage project "For a toxic free future in Armenia" that was supported financially by USAID through Catholic Relief Services, World Learning, NGO Center of the Armenian Assembly of America and Civic Development and Partnership Foundation. As a result of AWHHE's activities the inter-sectoral commission was established and the Resolution N526A on Allocation of Finance for the Security of the Burial Site was adopted by the Government on 24 April 2004. For the time being AWHHE continues to work around this issue in close cooperation with the Emergency Management Agency being introduced as a member of a working group.
Within the framework of the "Sustainable Solid Waste Management" Council membership of Ministry of Urban Development AWHHE advocates the ecologically sound methods of solid waste treatment and disposal including medical waste management.
AWHHE has its representative in the National Council on Sustainable Development facilitated by Prime Minister of Armenia.
The coalition membership allows AWHHE to contribute to the decision making process on environmental issues on the national level.
On the international level AWHHE actively participates in the processes of implementation of SAICM on all levels, Children Environmental Health Action Plan for Europe (CEHAPE) and European Union Water Initiative (EUWI).
AWHHE is involved in the Drafting Group on Guidelines on Water Supply and Sanitation in Extreme Weather Events in frame of Task Force on Extreme Weather Events (TFEWE) under the framework of the Protocol on Water and Health to the UNECE Convention on the Protection and Use of Transboundary Watercourses and International Lakes and is responsible for writing Chapter - Risk Communication.
AWHHE has a representative in the Steering Committee of the National Policy Dialogue (NPD) on water-related issues in Armenia. The State Committee of Water System of the RA Ministry of Territorial Administration, the Ministry of Nature Protection of the Republic of Armenia , the EECCA component of the European Union Water Initiative, the Secretariat of the Environmental Action Programme Task Force and the United Nations Economic Commission for Europe jointly are undertaking the implementation of the NPD.
During the recent years the topic of water and sanitation has become the main priority of AWHHE and the implemented projects have resulted in provision of sustainable adequate water and sanitation
AWHHE is a long term partner of WECF and since 2000 has implemented a number of joint projects on sustainable sanitation, water, agriculture and alternative energy aimed to contribute to sustainable rural development, improvement of water supply, alternative sanitation and agriculture, involvement of local people in the projects and strengthening their participation in decision making process. In frame of "For Sustainable and Environmentally Sound Rural Armenia" 2-stage project AWHHE constructed 3 school and 28 household urine diverting toilets. AWHHE implemented "Safe Water Supply for Hayanist Village " project with support of WfWP in frame of joint project with WECF. The project was aimed to improve water supply system in the village and for that purpose a new pipeline and a bypass were constructed. As a result of this project 1120 households were connected to the piped water system.
AWHHE believes that collaboration and effective partnership with all relevant stakeholders is milestone for effective and successful implementation of the projects to improve and sustain human being's life and to reach our vision "Healthy Environment for our Children, Healthy Generation for Armenia".