Lia Alexsishvili remembers when her bakery in the Georgian city of Telavi was only a small grocery store with very few customers, and she was the only employee. Today, her bustling business employs four full-time workers and often hires four additional part-time workers during busy holiday seasons.
“First of all, this used to be an old building, like all the other buildings on the street, but now ninety percent of the buildings have been renovated. We have many visitors now, and the people who live here are very happy,” says Alexsishvili.
The renovated buildings in Telavi - and the ensuing influx of visitors to the area - are some of the results of Georgia’s first regional development project, which is supported by the World Bank.