World Pulse

ARMENIA: A Digital Reunion

Ani Ghukasyan
Posted November 17, 2015 from Armenia

In Armenia more than 70% of the population can’t imagine their lives without the Internet. The 30% who don’t know how to switch on a computer are adults living in villages or towns.

I met with Arus, a 75-year-old woman living in Gyumri, a city in northern Armenia. She had a very sad story: She had lost her son after an earthquake and had no information on his whereabouts. She thought that her son had died. Arus liked to talk to me, to tell her story, to know about my life. One day she asked me how I got my job. When I answered that I found my job through an announcement, she thought that I meant a printed notice. When I explained to her that I found my job online, she was very surprised.

“Oh my God, that technical machine helped you to find a job! I don’t believe you; I’m sorry. Times really have changed,” she exclaimed. After a few moments, her astonishment shifted to interest. “If you could find job through that strange instrument, can’t you try to find a person?” Her eyes were shining as if hope were renewed in her maternal, sad heart. She wanted to find her son.

The next day I brought my laptop to her home, and she told me some information about her son. I quickly typed it into Google and... What a wonder! Her son was alive, living abroad, and most importantly—found! Through my searches, I discovered his email, his number, and his Skype information. It was an incredibly touching scene to see Mother and Son talk after so many years apart. In that moment, I realized the importance of the Internet.

Arus did, too. She thanked all the creators of that “Strange Machine” that helped her find her son. Now she visits Google almost every day and has decided to break the stereotype that “the Internet is not for adult Armenian women.”

I encourage all the women of the world to connect to modern technology, as the world is changing rapidly. Why not use online platforms to be free, empowered, and informed!

About this story


Women Weave the Web Campaign

crowdsourced nearly 600 voices from 71 countries. We have synthesized these stories and solutions for inclusive technology policies in a new report—Recommendations for Women's Digital Empowerment. This story is part of the larger report, which can be downloaded in full here.

Comments 5

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Victoria Green
Nov 18, 2015
Nov 18, 2015

Great job, Ani! 

Your story reminds me of a competition that Peace Corps organised worldwide on behalf of their Digital Library 50th Anniversary Photo Contest

Sharing American Culture Overseas - 1st Place winner coming from Moldova Cate Crandell Peace Corps Moldova, 2010-2012 Long Distance Relationships Volunteer Cate Crandall shares the magic of the Internet with her 97-year-old host great-grandmother during Easter brunch in Moldova. The Internet didn't work in the house that rests within her remote village deep in a valley, so the twosome went to the highest point in the yard—a garden. Five generations reconnected via a Skype conversation that included Crandall's host sister, who moved to Cambodia 19 years ago and had not been home in three years. 

Check out the picture here 

Nov 28, 2015
Nov 28, 2015

this is so inspiring indeed

Chi Yvonne Leina
Dec 01, 2015
Dec 01, 2015

Dear Ani,

This is very powerful and inspirational.The wonders of technolgy especially the internet are unending.Thank you for sharing!



Dec 07, 2015
Dec 07, 2015

Hi Ani,

OMG , while i was reading your story i was crying :(



Nusrat Ara
Jan 15, 2016
Jan 15, 2016

A moving story. Thanks for sharing.