She said Caritas Armenia has helped provide these families with food, housing, clothes, and other basic necessities. However, she said the situation is still problematic for many, and added that numerous families who received toys in Artashat did not have electricity to keep themselves warm throughout the winter.
She said Armenia, a largely Christian region, has faced political and religious persecution from neighboring Muslim countries. She also said the country's economy has also taken a severe hit because of the pandemic.
"We still need the families to be taken care of, we still need to continue to support our brothers and sisters in Armenia that are suffering," she said.
"What I was hearing from the families as I was speaking to them is that they feel that their brothers and sisters in the West have forgotten about them and that the issue of this work was not taken seriously by the international community."
Gia said one of the major goals of the organization is to raise awareness about Christian persecution and remind Catholics that they are not divided from the suffering of Catholics in other countries.
"Scripture tells us that when one member of the body of Christ suffers, we all suffer. So we know that even when children are suffering in Armenia, the body of Christ is suffering, and we have an obligation with our platform ... to raise awareness about the suffering of [others] but also how we can be a solution to their suffering," she said.
She said that through her experience with international aid groups, she has witnessed how violence and persecution impacts children most of all. She emphasized the importance of not only providing humanitarian services but an experience of hope for children to reclaim their childhood.
"Children are the most innocent and most vulnerable when it comes to the situation of refugees for persecution. A lot of times we're bringing food, we're bringing clothing, we're bringing humanitarian aid ... but we're often overlooking the hope factor … So really the goal of Operation Christmas is to bring that hope back to Children who have suffered so much."