I covered my head with a scarf, as it was the law of the country I was going to. It’s difficult to simply imagine the lives of Armenian women in Iran - a country where a clear red line stands between what is and isn’t allowed.
The Armenian community has a rich, historic past. However, the forced relocation by Shah Abbas in the 17th century gave new color to the community that used to live there for centuries. Around 300,000 Armenians from the Ararat valley were relocated into three main directions to: Aterpatakan, Tehran and Isfahan. A variety of crafts, art and trade started to newly blossom with the arrival of the Armenians.
At present, however, this community consists of 60,000 Armenians, the majority of which - 50,000 - live in Tehran. The Armenian women in the community are compared to an army; they put the most effort into the community’s survival and development.
“Armenian woman”, “Anahit”, “Armenuhi”, “Ani”, and the “Benevolent union of Armenian women”; The eclectic union of Armenian women in Tehran. These are the women’s organizations in Tehran, which were organized around community needs, such as helping the poor, giving shelter to refugees, take care of the elders, educating those women who didn’t go to school in crafts, carpet-weaving and etc.