NEW ORLEANS (WGNO) — Little Amal, the 12-foot-tall puppet of a 10-year-old refugee Syrian girl, will be in New Orleans for five different events around the city this weekend.
Little Amal is an international symbol of human rights, especially refugees. Little Amal is walking across the United States to raise awareness for the struggles refugees face. Amal’s engagement with hundreds of communities across the country will hopefully spark meaningful conversations to help others understand what Syrian refugees go through.
Bruna D’Avila, a creative producer for Little Amal, says she hopes the puppet “moves” people to understand her story.
“She spreads awareness and tells the stories of unaccompanied minors, the refugees who are traveling alone, all over the world due to war and climate change,” D’Avila said.
Little Amal will journey 6,000 miles across the United States to 42 cities now through November 5. She started her journey on the border of Syria and Turkey. She’s already traveled the world to Turkey, Greece, Italy, France, Switzerland, Germany, Belgium and the UK in 2021. Little Amal traveled around the five boroughs in New York City in the fall of 2022.
Crowds everywhere are fascinated by the size and movement of Little Amal.
“There are three puppeteers. One is inside Amal on stilts. That person walks, but also controls the emotions on her face. They maneuver her in different ways so she can turn her head left to right, open her eyes, and open her mouth. Then there’s two puppeteers that walk with her and control all her arm movements,” D’Avila said.
Little Amal will visit New Orleans on the following dates:
- Saturday, Oct. 14 — Little Amal will join Preservation Hall Jazz Band and students from LPO Academy at the Lafitte Greenway at 10:30 a.m.
- Saturday, Oct. 14 — Little Amal will be at The Moonwalk Riverfront Park at 5 p.m.
- Sunday, Oct. 15 — Little Amal will be at St. Luke’s Episcopal Church at 11:30 a.m.
- Sunday, Oct.15 — Little Amal will be at Andre Cailloux Center for the Performing Arts and Cultural Justice at 2541 Bayou Rd. in New Orleans at 4 p.m.
- Sunday, Oct. 15 — Little Amal will be at the Corner of Chartres and France streets at 6 p.m. in the Bywater.