Director: Leyla and Ryan Haidarian | Producer: Leyla and Ryan Haidarian
Focus Years: 2006 | Country: South Africa
Meet an average 8 year-old kid from Southern Africa. He loves soccer, the trampoline and running around the yard with his friends. Everything about him is normal - at least until he opens his mouth: carrying an Iranian name, Aref speaks fluent Persian and his parents aren't black, they're from Iran! "Aref" portrays a family who left Iran some 30 years ago and made Southern Africa their home. Their life is informed by their belief in the Baha'i faith, which was founded on the principle of unity in diversity. Truly manifesting a love for humanity, they have been raising Aref, who was orphaned at childbirth. Meet Aref, his family and his philosophy that people are like flowers in a garden: beautiful because of their very diversity!