Shant Khayalyan, a refugee of Armenian origin from Aleppo, quite known among the Armenian society of entrepreneurs with his successful start-up in soap-making, has recently become one of the most demanded experts of the Together4Armenia platform. Shortly after his first acquaintance with the target communities of the T4A platform in April and May 2017, the community leaders from Lori, Tavush, Shirak and Gegharkunik regions of Armenia started to continuously ask for his expertise.
Having founded the brand called “Beauty Products”, Shant has more than 5 years of professional experience in producing organic and natural body care products, particularly soap, shampoo, lotion and perfume, all made of natural oil and herbs growing in Armenia.
It is worth to note that Shant is not only a successful businessman in soap-making. He is also a social entrepreneur interested specifically in engaging community members with special needs into his business, in contributing to the inclusion of vulnerable children and in creating income-generating opportunities for women in the Armenian communities. Therefore, the audiences of his second round of trainings organized by the Together4Armenia team, included children with disabilities, women and students. He met with children, teachers, NGO representatives and volunteers of the Youth Initiatives Center in Gavar, and with the students of Pharmacy Department of Mkhitar Gosh University in Vanadzor to explain them the process and stages, ingredients and conditions necessary for soap-making.
“The opportunity of sharing my expertise in frames of Together4Armenia project for the second time enabled me to study three major regions of Armenia and their communities in a more detailed way. Through my workshops I was able to talk and work with community people and to learn about their capacities, about the challenges and benefits of their region. Finally, this was an opportunity for me to network and find out community members who could support me in advancing my business. I hope, and it seemed to me that at the other end my workshops were useful and motivated participants not to hesitate in realizing their business ideas”.
As an obvious result of these meetings, an initial agreement was reached. A teacher from Lermontovo village, Lori region, who was present at Shant's workshop managed to cooperate and take Shant’s expertise into her community. He will lead the professional student club on hand-made products for a two-month period of time. Children and youth from Lermontovo will soon be able to make organic soaps and start social business in their community.