When Anahit’s husband died in September 2018, the responsibilities on the mother-of-three doubled. The family, who live in Tegh village in Syunik, became heavily reliant on agriculture as his death meant they lost their main source of income.
“After all that I am trying to be stronger, it’s true that I can not fill in the gap that he left, but I try to,” she says.
Almost a third of Armenia’s rural households are female-headed households, a UN Report in 2017 found. These households are more likely to be in extreme poverty than male-headed households, the same report found.
Many of these families are in similar situations to Anahit, where the father has passed away. Others have male family members working in away or abroad. This often means the family, who are often also dependent on agriculture, are, for at least several months of the year, single-parent households.
We wanted to meet these families and understand their experiences. From Meghradzor to Yeghegnadzor to Tandzatap, we heard a wide array of stories while making this film on Armenia’s female families.
We eventually decided to focus on five women from Syunik, whose experiences were very different yet simultaneously very similar. As well as Anahit we also spoke to Anush, also from Tegh. In Svaranats, a mountainous village near to Tatev, we met Armine and her children, as well elderly sisters Sonik and Nora. All interesting in different ways, they are all Women of Armenia.