Razmik Stepanyan’s (50) family of six, including his wife, Nouneh (36,) his daughters, Ani (21,) Tatevik (20,) and Narineh (14,) and his son, Nayiri (10) lived in Nshavan, in a small house built by Razmik himself. The family shared a single bedroom and there simply was not enough space for the house. They always had dreamed for better living conditions, but could not accomplish them, not until they partnered with Habitat.

For around two decades, the family lived in the partly completed part of the house. For a toilette, the family used a wooden shack in a corner of the backyard. The kitchen was temporarily built adjacent to the house. It was a dark and extremely humid place dug half a meter into the ground, with dirt floor and dirt walls. Both the kitchen and the bathroom had extremely unhygienic conditions.

Nouneh says: “We were waiting for so long to be selected by Habitat and now that we have been selected, it is like a dream coming true. We are very happy and cannot wait to complete our home.”

Razmik works hard as a construction worker. He works in the major city of the region. Although he is a well-paid worker, the needs of his large family had not allowed him to complete his home on his own. But with the affordable loan he received from Habitat, he will be able to pay back with comfortable monthly repayments. Nouneh and the children work on the small orchard the family owns. The family also has a small greenhouse in their front yard and they sell the product in the market, thus securing an additional income.

Through partnering with Habitat, the Stepanyan family added the much needed sections to their home, including a decent and hygienic kitchen and bathroom. The Stepanyans are now very comfortable in their renovated home. Now, for the first time in their lives, Razmik and Nouneh have their own little room, while the children share a larger room. No one sleeps in the living room anymore. The kitchen is two steps above the ground and it is a dry and healthier place.

Razmik says: “Until the renovation, we were just living a bare existence, but now we feel that we are enjoying life!”

Nouneh says: “Now our home has all the minimal comforts that a home should have.”