F is for Fauzia Minallah: The Funkor Child Art Center

The video above was created by the artist Fauzia Minallah. She is also the founder of The Funkor Child Art Center, which is based in Islamabad.

Here is some background from its web site.

Funkor uses the medium of art and books to extend children’s outlook and awareness of the concepts of environment and heritage protection, human rights, equality, tolerance and peace.

Funkor is committed to promoting art among children and generating healthy and creative activities for children from a broad spectrum of society.

Its mission is to organize workshops and events for children who rarely get a chance of experiencing the joy of painting and book reading. This is done in collaboration with different NGO’s and Government departments.

Funkor particularly reaches out to ‘Children in Crises’ and generates art workshops and book reading sessions in schools for the under-privileged, children belonging to minority marginalised groups living in katchi Abadis (Shanty Towns), refugee and relief camps and centers for Special Children. It aims.

To promote awareness through Art and books.

To use Art and Books in promoting diversity and respect for different cultures, religions and races.

To use Art and Books in encouraging children to appreciate and respect Nature.

Fauzia’s video attracted wide attention. Here is some background from the MY HERO site.

Pakistani artist and peace activist, Fauzia Minallah, won ‘2010 Ron Kovic Peace Award’ for her short film ‘Let Them Bloom.’

Ron Kovic selected this film because of its inspirational message of peace, dignity, reconciliation and forgiveness.

Fauzia’s film ‘Let Them Bloom’ tells the story of a peace mural, created by children from a squatter settlement in Islamabad.

The children’s artwork offers a compelling call for peace amidst an environment of violence.


You can read more about Fauzia in a piece written by Joanne Tawfilis for the MY HERO site.


Here is another film from Fauzia called Amai – The Bird of Light. She gives some background to the film.

As a mother and a painter, I felt the need to work with children through art and picture books.

It was in 2001 that I developed Amai – the bird of light, a cartoon character for children, it is a magical bird made of light and million tiny stars, that can turn into a shooting star and take children on exciting adventures around the world.

Amai means ‘mother’ in some parts of Balochistan. Amai loves children like a mother. She can fly children million miles up in the space and thousands of miles under the earth. She takes them back in the past as well as, in future.

Amai wants children to know their world, love and respect it and work for making it a humane one.

In December 2001, Amai featured in Amai’s Wish, a picture book that promotes empathy for American as well as Afghan children.

It was in 2002 I founded Funkor Child Art Center and started work with the Afghan refugee children in the refugee camps of Islamabad, using art activities and book reading sessions as an integral part of the healing process.

Since then we have worked with the earthquake victims of 2005, Internally Displaced Persons IDPs in 2009 and the flood victims in 2010 and 2011.

In addition we have ongoing projects of producing books and generating creative activities for special children, as well as organizing workshops for the children from minority communities, especially those from the most marginalized group of Christian community who live in the shanty towns of Islamabad.

In all our activities for children Amai is a vehicle that promotes ideas of a fairer world and using her as a healing touch with children in crisis.

Amai was the outcome of my mother instinct, it is a vehicle I use with children to promote values that will enable them to be responsible citizens of not only their own country but of the world too.

This is the spirit behind Funkor’s work with children. It is not a big organization … but we are able to bring light through art and books, in the lives of children who really need them the most.

You can find many more videos from the Center here:


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