Children of Mindanao is a socio-civic venture that helps children from ethnic-religious minorities and/or conflict-prone regions to access education better. By making education more accessible, its aim is to promote peace and understanding, as well as girls empowerment.
Currently, “Children of Mindanao” is primarily ran by Filipino Maranao siblings Farah Ghodsinia and Arman Ghodsinia. Both siblings are part of the Four Royal Houses of Lanao, and are passionate in peace-building and community development.
Farah founded Children of Mindanao, as a way to help children from fellow ethnic and/or religious minorities. Presently, she is pursuing her second degree as a law student at the University of the Philippines. She acquired her undergraduate degree from the same university, where she graduated Magna Cum Laude.
Previously, she served as President of the 10th National Youth Parliament of the Philippines, which is the biggest parliamentary gathering of youth in her country. She was the first female and Maranao elected as President of such parliament. In 2017, Farah has been named as one of the “30 under 30 Gamechangers” by Lifestyle Asia. She has also been selected as one of the 18 Young Societal Leaders of the Singapore Summit 2017, where she spoke at the High-Level Panel on Youth Leadership.
Arman manages Children of Mindanao, together with his sister. He provides “Science, Technology and Math” lectures to kids, during school visits. Noteably, Arman was the first Maranao to have graduated Summa Cum Laude from the Molecular Biology and Biotechnology (MBB) program of the University of the Philippines. He also emerged as the Valedictorian of his MBB batch.
Arman was also selected to deliver the Valedictory Speech, in front of all graduating students of the University of the Philippines-Diliman in June 2017. At that time, the war in Marawi City, Lanao del Sur was still ongoing. His speech was widely covered by Philippine news media, as he called for peace and unity throughout the country. He also spoke on the ability of members from minority groups to excel and contribute to nation-building. His speech became viral, a copy of which can be read here.