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September 24
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The situation when a woman can feel her independent and protected much depends on whether she is employed and whether she has an interesting job to feel happy and self-confident.

The main problems that women often face in Armenia are unemployment and lack of knowledge about their rights. This usually leads to violation of their rights and gender-based violence. 

In its cooperation with Armenia, the EU is trying to help for the strengthening women in business, providing opportunities for quality education.

Several EU projects are targeted at the development of women entrepreneurs, providing an opportunity for young women to get education in Europe and to come back to Armenia to use their knowledge for the benefit of Armenia. 

The EU supports women entrepreneurs in Armenia through the Women in Business programme, which is implemented by the European Bank for Reconstruction and Development (EBRD). Support provided by the programme includes business advice, training and mentoring to women-led companies.

One of the directions of these programs is providing assistance to women in rural communities. Among them, for example, are six modern dried fruit and herb-production facilities that have been established in the communities of Arevshat, Aragatsavan, Katnaghbyur, Byurakan, Dprabak and Geghard.                

In addition to business and job opportunities, the European Union is providing opportunities for the international education.

Armenia was provided with more than €6.5 million in funding for student and staff exchanges under Erasmus+ in 2015-2017. Besides, the EU has set a 75% target to support young women under the EU4Youth programme that runs until 2020.

One of the beneficiaries of new EU-finded Advancing Gender Equality and the Rights of Survivors program is 41-year-old Marine. Six years ago she divorced due to psychological and physical abuse that she endured for many years, and her seven children left.

Marine first joined the business development and job development courses that the program offered, along with one month of vocational training, and then was able to write a business plan that was selected for funding. Now she is running a small business of homemade baked goods.

Since its launch in January 2015, the two-year project has helped 230 survivors of gender-based violence gain increased employability, small business skills, and establish small businesses.

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