EcoLab from Armenia thinks about democracy from a holistic perspective: ecological sustainability, participation, and active citizenship go hand in hand. The program empowers young Armenians, particularly those from rural areas, to act upon those values. Thus they can become the driving force behind social change and inclusive society. The series of seminars revolve around environmental issues, community development, and social entrepreneurship.
When it comes to the environment, Armenia suffers from mining pollution, yet wide expanses of untouched nature remain that deserve preservation. Community development is especially important in rural areas that are struggling economically and suffering from emigration. Social entrepreneurship presents a solution to both of these issues, giving young people the capacity to innovatively and sustainably take action. Since 2016, most events are conducted in the “Boo Alternative House” – a sustainable training and community space that EcoLab is building in the mountains of Vanadzor. The program is implemented by the EcoLab Foundation with support by the German Federal Foreign Office and the Robert Bosch Foundation.