ASEAN Peace Project Expanded Team Member Profiles

Co-founder and Director, ASEAN Peace Project
Project Secretary, Young Peacebuilders for Climate Action

Ferth Vandensteen Manaysay is currently a graduate student working towards his Master’s degree in international relations at the Graduate School of Asia-Pacific Studies in Waseda University.  Prior to moving to Tokyo, he lived in South Korea as a recipient of the Korean Government Scholarship Programme. He has mostly advocated for issues related to good governance, peace-building and environmental protection. His previous experiences include working for the Philippine government, media and non-profit sector. He presently serves as the Regional Director for Asia-Pacific of Green the Gene, a global grassroots movement for positive environmental action through over 7 000 children and youth volunteers from schools and universities across 62 countries. Right before co-founding and spearheading the ASEAN Peace Project, Ferth was selected by the U.S. Embassy in Manila as one of the four academic fellows from the Philippines to participate in President Barack Obama’s Young Southeast Asian Leaders Initiative in the U.S. focused on global environmental issues at the East-West Center. He also participated in or mentored for various local and international programs, including the Generation Democracy, CIMB Young Leaders ASEAN Summit, ASEAN-Korea Frontier Forum, ASEAN Youth Volunteer Programme and Japan-East Asia Network of Exchange for Students and Youths, among many others. Ferth completed his Bachelor’s cum laude degree in Political Science at the University of the Philippines Diliman.

Co-founder and Deputy Director, ASEAN Peace Project
Project Treasurer, Young Peacebuilders for Climate Action

Ma. Cathrene Lagare is a senior student at Ateneo de Davao University pursuing Bachelor of Science in Environmental Science with a minor in Sociology. She is an alumnus of the Young Southeast Asian Leaders Initiative’s academic fellowship at the East-West Center, which provided her with training and mentorship on environmental leadership, along with being equipped with a broader perspective to be capable of addressing diverse local to global environmental issues. She is currently the President of Ateneo de Davao University’s Environmental Science Community, an organization which seeks to inculcate ecological stewardship within the university and its community. Her strong interests for the environment and the community have enlisted her to various volunteer programs and advocacy works. She had participated to different local and international conferences and programs in the Philippines, Japan, Malaysia, and the United States. She advocates and aspires to be a science communicator, and be able to construe the science behind climate change to the local communities.

Co-founder and Logistics Officer, ASEAN Peace Project

Christian Gino is a researcher at the Bureau of Fisheries and Aquatic Resources of the Philippines. He graduated with Bachelor of Science degree in Marine Biology at the Mindanao State University-General Santos. Previously, he was an exchange student and ambassador of goodwill in American Field Service and Japan East Asia Network of Exchanged Students for Youths. He is currently an active volunteer of Hearts and Brains, Inc. which focuses more on environmental, health, education, livelihood, relief, and psychosocial activities. Among the activities include assisting patients from hospitalization to discharge, planting and growing tree seedlings, walking blood databank, backyard gardening, and medical missions. He recently served as academic fellow for the Young Southeast Asian Leaders Initiative, which thought and inspired him to do more for his region. He has engaged himself in community developmental projects through such organizations and initiatives as PaWeCanDo-It and Batang Star Philippines, which have provided outreach, feeding, and waste management programs. He has also attended various youth conferences, education summits, environmental conservation seminars, and interfaith dialogues.

Co-founder, ASEAN Peace Project

Almira Menson completed her bachelor’s and master’s degrees in English and Comparative Literature from the Mindanao State University Marawi. She is also an alumnus of the Young Southeast Asian Leaders Initiative Academic Fellowship and the Philippine Youth Leadership Program, which are both under the U.S. Department of State. Interested in policy formulation and the legislative process, Menson is an active member in the Congressional Internship Program for Young Mindanao Leaders and works in the Congressional Committee overseeing the Millennium Development Goals. Through this program, she has found a passion involved with Goal 1, Eradicate Extreme Poverty and Hunger and Goal 7, Ensure Environmental Sustainability. Ms. Menson has co-authored and written papers on a wide range of subjects regarding food security, the conflict in Mindanao and enriching the lives of people living in the area. Most importantly, she is an educator shaping the lives of her students at home.

Social Media and Communications Officer, ASEAN Peace Project, Young Peacebuilders for Climate Action

John Espino is a Graphic Designer based in Davao, Philippines. He is currently pursuing Bachelor of Arts in Mass Communication at Ateneo de Davao University. He’s on Twitter @jkspn.

Project Lead, Young Peace-builders for Climate Action

Anjela Mae Era is currently working as a senior project officer at the Local Government Academy of the Philippines. She is also a board member of the Gen2:15 Development Foundation, Inc. She obtained a Bachelor’s degree in Development Studies in the De La Salle University and received an honorable mention award. With seed funding from the United States Agency for International Development (USAID), she led the Project Resiliency, Empowerment, and Advocacy on Disaster of the Youth (Project READY) which is now being transformed into a youth movement with its principles being integrated into the Young Peacebuilders for Climate Action. She has also been involved in different volunteer and leadership programmes locally and abroad, such as: the International Youth Exchange program in Japan, ASEAN Youth Volunteer Programme (AYVP) in Cambodia, ASEAN4U in Malaysia and Young Southeast Asian Leaders Initiative (YSEALI) Seeds for the Future in Thailand. She became the Manager for Local Network Development of the ASEAN Youth Organization – Philippines and is currently serving as an AYVP Alumna Ambassador. She is also a certified resource speaker for the Minimum Initial Service Package on Sexual and Reproductive Health (MISP-SRH) on Emergencies and Disasters. Her advocacy includes climate change adaptation, disaster risk reduction, peace building and youth development.

Project Partnerships and Logistics Officer, Young Peace-builders for Climate Action

A curious life learner and avid note-taker, Racquel is always looking for new experiences and challenges to develop her skills. She graduated top of her class with a Bachelor’s degree in Community Development from the University of the Philippines Diliman. As a development practitioner, she has knowledge and experience in community research, training and education, and community organizing. She has collaborated with children and youth in urban communities to help in organizing and advocating for their rights. She believes in the capacities and potentials of the younger generation to instill change in their communities. Racquel was also one of the facilitators in the ASEAN Youth Volunteer Programme in the Philippines. On weekends, she joins her Teach Peace Build Peace family in promoting peace education to various sectors. Now, she’s exploring a new field by organizing health workers in the City of Malabon to raise awareness on EO 51 (Milk Code) and help improve children’s nutrition. She works as City Project Officer at World Vision Philippines, and is the youngest member of the team creating an enhanced reporting platform and mobile app to inform more people about the Code, thereby improving compliance on the law. Racquel aims to utilize her leadership and competency toward public service in the future.

Project Lead for Thailand, ASEAN Peace Project

Art Phanthumachinda is a fourth year undergraduate majoring in English and minoring in German at the Srinakharinwirot University. He is interested in environment, philosophy, history, culture, music, and social work. During his study in high school, he worked for different organizations and communities, including the administrative committee of Interact Club District 3350 of the Rotary International. He ran several environmental projects for the club such as “Save Turtles and Coral Reefs” project and other community service programs. As a college student, he became a part of a committee of the student club of the Faculty of Humanities and currently works in the student council of Srinakhatinwirot University. He has also pursued many environmental projects to raise the awareness of college students. For instance, as a social entrepreneur, he generated a smart-phone application called “Bag Block” to help reduce plastic bags used in convenient stores. Recently, he was selected to attend the Young Southeast Asian Leaders Initiative (YSEALI) Academic Fellowship on Environmental Issues at The University of Montana. He later became the co-founder of the YSEALI cross-country project called “Grains for Green ASEAN” and director of the “Andaman Youth” project.

Deputy Project Lead for Thailand, ASEAN Peace Project

Parinya Pramuanvorakij finished his Bachelor’s degree in Civil Engineering at the King Mongkut’s University of Technology Thonburi in which he also volunteered as a student ambassador. He has recently been promoted as the president of the International Joy Club. He has been an active member of the Young Southeast Asian Leaders Initiative (YSEALI) for more than two years now. He was earlier chosen to participate in the YSEALI Academic Fellowship at University of Massachusetts, which enabled him to train on civic engagement issues. During his fellowship, he was also running a 2016 presidential election simulation campaign. He is also the co-founder of P&P Verve For Life Co., Ltd Part, which is a Bangkok-based soda and drink distributor.

Project Coordinator for Indonesia, Young Peace-builders for Climate Action

Nurasiah Jamil is a project officer for gender and children and youth empowerment at Rumah KitaB, which has enabled her to network with UN Children’s Fund, Asia Foundation, Australian Embassy in Jakarta and Ford Foundation. She graduated from Faculty of Public Health at University of Indonesia. She volunteers on medical health services and health promotion for rural areas in Indonesia. She has five years of work experience in the field of disaster risk reduction. Her experiences include facilitating a safe school program, spearheading a psychological therapy in Sinabung Mountain Eruption Area and post-flood assessment in Garut, need assessment after the earthquake in Alor, Aceh, as well as in the post-conflict areas in Papua. Presently, she leads the Disaster Risk Reduction Move Project with support from the United States Agency for International Development and the ASEAN Youth Volunteer Programme.

Project Coordinator for Thailand, Young Peace-builders for Climate Action

Arnuphap Meeechaka is a graduate student working towards his Master’s degree in Electrical Engineering at the King Mongkut’s University of Technology Thonburi. He was an academic fellow for civic engagement at the Northern Illinois University under the Young Southeast Asian Leaders Initiative. Last year, he was also one of the participants for the ASEAN Peace Project’s accelerator program in Thailand. He has been a social entrepreneur staff at the Luuk Rieng Group, which is a non-profit organization dedicated to peace-building activities for children and youth in the southernmost provinces of Thailand. Previously, he received student and community leadership awards from the Ministry of Education of Thailand and the Provincial Government of Chiang Mai.

Christina Monroe

Project Adviser and Mentor
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Christina Monroe (Leadership Education Specialist) designs and delivers a suite of Leadership Programs at the East-West Center with a focus on leadership capacity building at the individual and organizational levels. Programs include the U.S. State Department-funded Study of the U.S. Institute on Global Environmental Issues for emerging leaders from the Middle East, Europe, Latin America and Asia; the Asia Pacific Leadership Program; MARA Executive Leadership Program of Malaysia; and ProSPER.Net – United Nations University Sustainable Development Leadership Program for Researchers. She served as co-chair of the Center’s three-year Sustainability Task Force. Prior to joining EWC, Ms. Monroe was Director of the Service Learning Program at the University of Colorado at Boulder. She completed a graduate certificate in Asia Pacific Leadership from the East-West Center and University of Hawaii, an MA in social sciences from the University of Amsterdam and BA in sociology (Phi Beta Kappa) from the University of Tulsa. She is a recent graduate of the Organizational Consulting and Change Leadership program at Georgetown University.

Lance Boyd

Project Adviser and Mentor
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Lance Boyd (Lead Instructor) is an environmental educator with a background in interdisciplinary learning and extensive professional experience at the K12 and tertiary levels in North America. Mr. Boyd’s experience in Asia includes two Fulbright Fellowships in Japan and Singapore, service as a USAID environmental education consultant for ASEAN, and Earthwatch funded research on insectivorous bats in peninsular Malaysia. In Europe, Mr. Boyd studied as an undergraduate in Austria, completed his MA at the International School for Humanities and Social Sciences at the University of Amsterdam, and completed a Goethe Institute funded study of the environmental movement in Germany. While working for the University of Colorado’s Cooperative Institute for Research in Environmental Science he earned an MA in Education Foundations. He currently lives in Hawai‘i and works as an Instructor for the East-West Center’s Environmental Leadership Institutes (SUSI).