Sep 13, 2023 - News

Globe-trekking puppet Little Amal visits Philadelphia

Little Amal visits us after stopping by Boston! Photo: Jessica Rinaldi/The Boston Globe via Getty Images

Little Amal is getting the Philly treatment.

Driving the news: The giant, globe-trekking puppet — which has become a symbol of human rights — is being feted by many organizations and local leaders during her first stop Wednesday at Columbus Park as the city rolls out the red carpet for her two-day stay.

  • The puppet, which depicts a 10-year-old Syrian refugee, is also stopping by the City Hall courtyard tonight before making her final rounds Thursday morning at the One Art Community Center.

Context: Amal, which means "hope" in Arabic, was inspired by a character in the immersive play "The Jungle," Axios' Madalyn Mendoza writes.

The intrigue: Her international journey began July 2021 in her hometown of Aleppo, Syria.

  • Since then, she's visited 90 cities and has been greeted by Pope Francis, Whoopi Goldberg and Jude Law, among others.

Of note: She began the first leg of her American trip in Boston, and she'll end in San Diego on Nov. 5.

How it works: It takes four people to operate the 12-foot puppet, who can still navigate through large crowds despite her stature, per the Inquirer.

What they're saying: The 6,000-mile journey across the U.S. is meant as a celebration of "art, hope and shared humanity that aims to unite communities and refocus attention on the urgent needs of refugees, immigrants and asylum seekers," organizers said in a statement.


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