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Our Team 2016-10-28T16:06:03+00:00

Passion & Commitment to Serve

For the Unseen is run by a lean and dedicated team with a common goal to alleviate the pain and suffering of the unseen around the round. We strive to do this with sustainable projects to dignify and empower communities with pathways to a happy and healthy life. Click on the + sign below each team member to learn more about them.

PUNEH ALAI
PUNEH ALAIFounder & Board Member

Puneh Ala’i is the founder of For The Unseen, a not-for-profit serving those in need the world over. Puneh was raised by immigrant parents who raised her with the belief that “Mankind is One” and service is a key factor in contributing to this life. Puneh’s vision to create For The Unseen was ignited in a small war-torn corner of the world – Syria. If you had asked her when she was there a few years ago, she would have never imagined she would be the founder of a 501c3 organization that has provided thousands of dollars of medical aid, food, toys, and even schooling to the Syrian refugees. Puneh has worked with children ever since she can remember, but working with Syrian refugee children was a transformational experience. Even in the midst of war, despair, loss, and nothingness, their purity and love can shine through and prevailed. It was with this flame of love and hope in her heart that Puneh established For The Unseen. She wants to reach out over the world and help serve those in need with food, shelter, medical support, but most of all love and hope. She believes that in the path of service, it is only love and hope that can truly heal wounds and help them overcome the challenges they face.

SHADI SHAFFER
SHADI SHAFFERBoard Member
Attorney Shadi Ala’i Shaffer was elected Board Member due to her committed service to children and the under served of the world. Shadi’s volunteer service work began in her teens and led her to Lithuania where she lived for three months to help orphaned children in the Baltic region. The service project helped rehab orphanages making it safer, cleaner, and more beautiful for the kids. During her stay, the service team helped many kids improve their hygiene, stay away from smoking/alcohol, and improve their school skills and virtues. Years later, Shadi would speak to at-risk youth in the secondary school system throughout Southern California on the importance of staying in school and considering college as a possibility in their career path. Shadi herself is the first U.S. born child of immigrant parents, she is the first in her family to complete her college studies and get her J.D. degree in law. Shadi also served on the Board of the Pacific Youth Symphony Ensemble for Orange County promoting the arts throughout the community. She also serves as a Board Member for Stand Up For Kids – a nonprofit organization that helps fight against youth homelessness in Orange County.
PATRICK PHANCAO
PATRICK PHANCAOBoard Member
Attorney Patrick Phancao was elected as a Board Member because of his exposure to international issues, especially pertaining to civil wars within third world countries. Patrick was raised primarily in France and Congo where his family survived several civil upheavals stemming from the Congo. He has seen first hand the remnants of what a war could do to individuals and families. When Patrick came to America, he vowed never to let go of the life lessons he had learned during these difficult times. “For The Unseen” was the type of organization he had been searching for, and is now happy to contribute whatever time, knowledge, and expertise he can bring to the cause. After all, the founder had a rather humble request to ask of him “Will you help me in my quest for world peace” she asked? Who could say no that? Attorney Phancao is a practitioner in the field of Asset Protection and Estate Planning. He dedicates his work to protecting families, and ensuring the children are always protected. He believed his best bet at making a contribution would be to start at the root of all societies – the family unit.
MUHANNAD BARAZI
MUHANNAD BARAZIBoard Member
Muhannad Barazi is a Syrian-American, born and raised in southern California. His father and mother are both from Syria and he grew up with one brother and two sisters, all of whom were born in California as well. He is tremendously influenced by his father’s peaceful and non-violent activism in the areas of history, politics, humanitarian aid, and philosophy. Muhannad was a physics major, professional MMA fighter and an athletic trainer. He married his long time best friend, who supports him greatly in his work as an international humanitarian. They currently live together in Southern California with their two beautiful daughters. Muhannad is a board executive with Neocell Corporation and has worked with various missions and projects assisting Syrian refugees in Lebanon, Jordan and Turkey. Muhannad and Puneh have crossed paths numerous times with their work for Syrian refugees. He is very inspired by her spirit and motivation to work with the people of his fatherland as well as support all the “unseen” people in the world.
KIRSTEN HOLLAND
KIRSTEN HOLLANDContent Manager
Kirsten Holland serves as the newsletter coordinator for For The Unseen.  In 2012, she had the opportunity to study in Amman, Jordan, and saw first-hand the impact violence in neighboring countries was having on Jordan and the region as a whole.  When Kirsten heard about the amazing work For The Unseen was doing to help Syrian refugees, she was eager to get involved, spread the word, and help build support for the organization.  She is responsible for generating content for monthly e-newsletters that help people around the world stay up to date on For The Unseen’s exciting and meaningful work.  Kirsten lives in Washington, DC, where she works for a boutique government affairs consulting firm.  Her work primarily focuses on legislative policy and advocacy pertaining to the environment, public transportation, and health care.  She holds a BA in International Studies and Political Science from Elon University.
HAI TRUONG
HAI TRUONGWeb Dev. & Strategic Design
Hai is a first-generation born Vietnamese-American raised by a single mother. His mother fled Vietnam in the early 80’s and successfully helped bring over 10 family members to the United States despite the danger and challenges faced with escaping. Hai began engaging with community work and volunteering through programs in high-school and benefitted from a mentor who taught him the value of civic engagement and serving the people. Originally pursuing a career in education and teaching while in college, Hai was exposed to opportunities to work for a congressional office in Washington D.C., development and fundraising for the Orange County United Way, and completing a Public Policy Fellowship at UC Berkeley and Law Fellows Program at UCLA. Though successfully admitted in the Peace Corps for deployment in South America upon graduation, Hai decided to diversify his perspective and explored different career paths ranging from technology recruiting to eventually running his own creative agency with two friends. His goal is to lend his experience and perspective to help For the Unseen expand its capacity to continue doing good for the world.

One People

One World

One Mission

Get Connected

For the Unseen connects with leaders and communities all over the world to learn how to best serve and where to find the people who need help.

Being seen brings their personal stories — and their souls — back to life. The direct interaction shows they are not alone; it helps inspire and empower these unseen individuals to continue living.