Donation Blog

Envoy Wins HOSCAR 2021


For 19 years, the HOSCARs have acknowledged hostels from all four corners of the globe with the highest customer reviews and ratings. This year, with the world in lockdown and travel put on hold, the HOSCAR awards have been restructured to recognise the incredible work hostels have been doing in their communities, and to support the industry, during the global pandemic.

Fabrizio Giulio, Chief Supply Officer at Hostelworld, said: “This year’s HOSCARs not only commemorate a difficult year for the hostel industry, but allow us to celebrate the incredible efforts our hostel partners have taken during this time. We wanted to recognise all their achievements.  

The HOSCARs are equally valuable to our community.  They provide a trusted way for our customers to identify the experience they want from their travels, and where to find it. It was important that our customers were still a crucial part of the awards and involved in selecting the hostels that deserve to be recognised for their excellence and extraordinary efforts.” 

You can find full list of winners here: 

Envoy Wins!

Representing Armenia, Envoy Hostel was crowned most EXTRAORDINARY Community and Social Impact Hostel by a panel of expert travel judges and more than 20,000 votes by hostel travellers all around the world.  

This HOSCAR award recognises envoy’s heartfelt charity efforts especially in 2020. In response to the war that broke out on the border of Armenia in late September 2020, many fled the war zone. Some of these refugees, somehow, found their way to envoy in Yerevan. Naturally, we accepted them with open hearts and did our best to look after all their needs. This included food and other essential needs like winter clothing. Most had fled without having the chance to bring much supplies. Many couldnt return even after the war ended. So we continued to look after these vulnerable families until they had proper housing to go to. Our efforts also included:

  • Fundraising efforts across the globe to collect enough funds to support all the families we were helping.
  • Entertaining the children to keep their spirits high. Most had their fathers, brothers, uncles fighting in the war so it was important to keep their minds busy. We would arrange entertainment, celebrate their birthdays and even take them on excursions around the city, to the zoo and to historic sights outside of Yerevan.
  • Arranging family dinner nights. We would purchase ingredients and together as one big family would cook meals to enjoy together. This would lift the spirits of all staying at envoy.
  • Visiting refugee families not staying at envoy. We took essential items and food to them. We also bought fire wood so they could survive the harsh winters.
  • One family we found (not staying at envoy) had 10 children. They were very poor and the mother of the family was suffering from serious illness. We bought them an oven and a washing machine so they can cook meals and improve their hygiene.
  • Helped start a small business! We bought a sewing machine for a young lady who had just learnt how to sew. She started to sew linen and sell the sets to earn an income.
  • We found work for a couple of people staying at envoy who were looking for work.
  • Joined a Dear Santa program, taking gifts to children affected by the war. Once little girl had asked for a desk as she loved to study and wanted to become a bank manager in future. Another little boy had asked for a bicycle. It was a joy to see their smiling faces when we delivered their gifts.

Envoy would like to thank Hostelworld judges and to all those who voted for us. Envoy has received HOSCAR’s 9 times in past years (recognised as Best Hostel in Armenia 7 times and also twice in Georgia). However, this years award is more important to us as it is a special international category and under difficult circumstances of both the covid pandemic and a war. Our team feels encouraged and committed to do more good in our communities and to help those in need.

We also want to say a huge thank you to all our networks, friends, family members, past guests and friends of friends who all helped in these difficult times. This award was possible thanks to each and everyone of you. Thank you for being there when we needed help.

Projects - Current

Finding Families in Need

Volunteers entertaining refugees

Finding Families in need

There are many families in need in our region. Life is not easy and many can have genuine needs. Our first step in starting a project is to identify which family is more need than others. This is done in cooperation with other charity organisations we trust who have databases of families in real need. Once a few families are identified, envoy team members go and visit these families, one by one. We get to know them and form a relationship with them so we can understand their needs in more detail and know how best to help.

Help with Diginity

Help needs to be wanted. As we chose a family to help and build a relationship with them, we get to know them better. We understand their needs. We also understand their skills and capabilities. We discuss with them what help they may want and make sure we are able to provide appropriate help. If we are not able to help in an appropriate way, we wont take on the project. Both the family and us need to be committed and ready to start the project.

Envoy’s Next Project

We are currently visiting families to be able to select the next project. To be able to fund the next project we will soon be organising a fundraising event. We are hoping to start the next project in July 2021. We hope you will be able to support us in our next project. To do so please donate, knowing that 100% of funds raised go to the project.


Projects - Completed

Sample Project – Completed

Volunteers entertaining refugees

The Experience of Taking in Refugees

As soon as the war broke out, Envoy volunteered on taking in refugees. We knew it was the right thing to do. Our aim was to provide a safe place to stay and to look after all the needs of the families staying with us. Families were mainly women and children since the men had stayed stayed back to protect their teritorry.  Realising the concern of families about their loved ones who had stayed back as well as the uncertainty about their fate, we wanted to offer for than a refuge for all those staying with us. Our mission extended to offering care and creating a happy environment. We wanted to fill them with hope for the future and bring smiles in these difficult days.

Celebrating Life Events

We had the opportunity to celebrate the birthdays of a few of the children during the days of the war.  Making the children feel special during these difficult times certainly went a long way to bring smiles to them and their families. 

Excursions by Envoy

In the first weeks of staying at envoy, all schools were cancelled due to the Coronavirus outbreak. The children were spending almost all their time without any organised activity. So Envoy team members arranged a few outings to give the opportunity for the children to get out and about.

Getting into the spirit of what envoy knows best, we arranged a walking tour of Yerevan. All the mums and their children came along on an orientation tour around the city. We revealed some of the history and interesting facts for the children to learn more about Yerevan. Together we visited some of the major sights around the city and had a lot of fun together with our special guests.

On another occassion we took the children on an outing to the Yerevan Zoo. This was a wonderful experience for the children as many had never been to a zoo before. They enjoyed seeing all the different creatures and learning about them.

On another evening we took the children out for ice cream. This certainly brought smiles to their beautiful faces. Who doesnt love ice cream? 😀

Events at Envoy

All the local community came together during this difficult time and was offering help in many different ways. This included visits to the  families displaced by the war.  At Envoy we had a couple of events which definitely brought a smile to the children. 

The first event was a few volunteers who came to sing folk songs with the children. All the children gathered around in the envoy common room and sang familiar as well as new songs together. It really inspired a wonderful mood and smiles all around.

We were also visited by a locally renown artist/actor. It was a treat for the children to meet a celebrity who had taken the time to visit and encourage them.

We are very grateful for all who have volunteered their time. It has been wonderful to see the community come together. The support has been in many different ways, bringing hope, love and smiles to all affected by the war.

Some of the families we had the pleasure of taking in as refugees have returned to their homes after the war. This has allowed us to accept new families and extend our care to more people. This has been made possible by the many people around the world who have been donating funds to Envoy, whom we are extremely grateful for.



Current Projects

Completed Projects



Hostel BLOG




Envoy Hostel since its establishment in 2005, has helped give back to the local community. It has:
* Sponsored families in need
* Created employment opportunities in the regions
* Built and renovated houses for less fortunate families
* Housed refugees in the 2020 war for a period of 6 months
* Reached out to families fleeing the war and provided them with essential needs
Funds being raised now are to help build permanent housing for 3 families effected by the 2020 war and covid.
* Astghik from Khorunk village, along with 5 other family members live in appalling conditions (video: Stories Untold #1)
* A family of 5 fleeing the 2020 war are currently living in Arzni village with 13 people in a small 3 bedroom apartment in cramped conditions (video: Stories Untold#2)
* Alvard and her son are barely making ends meet. The poor condition of their house exacerbating Alvard’s health issues making her unable to work. (video: Stories Untold#3)
Your donations will help us build proper housing and vastly improve their living conditions. 100% of funds collected will be used for these projects.
Together we can make a difference!


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What Charity We Do

Lifting spirits of refugees

Since our begining and as part of our Mission and Values, envoy has had a heart to give back to community and do charity work. Over the years, we are thankful to be in position to help our communities in the following ways:

  • Creating employment with fair conditions in the villages through our tour services 
  • Sponsoring families in need and building a relationship with them
  • Renovating and building homes for families in need
  • Supporting orphanges (in Georgia and Armenia)

In 2020 with the outbreak of war on the border to  Armenia, envoy immediately started to help those in need by:

  • Housing refugees, mostly women and children who fled the war zone
  • Helping refugees with essential needs including food and clothing
  • Bringing smiles to the war affected children by surprising them with gifts for New Year
  • Helping refugees who could no longer return to their villages find employment or start mini businesses
  • Maintaining contact with the families we looked after, who had returned to their homes to ensure they were doing well

Envoy has co-ordinated and project managed this work. Many of our personal networks have provided help. This includes our past guests, friends and family spread across the world. All have generously supported our initiatves, donating much needed funds. 100% of all collected donations go to our projects. Envoy takes no commission in any form. Our desire is to help build a better future for the generations to come.

Our charity efforts gained recognition in the 2021 Hostelworld awards. Envoy hostel Yerevan won the International Hoscar award for “Community and Social Impact”.  We feel encouraged and very thankful for receiving this award.

Support Our Mission

As a hostel we offer a home away from home for all our travellers. As an organisation we are also committed to continuing our charity work to focus on providing suitable homes for families in need.

We invite you to join our mission and help build a better future together for those who are in need.