BOSTON (WHDH) - A larger than life puppet went on parade through the streets of Boston and Cambridge Thursday, arriving in the area as part of a mission to raise awareness and donations for refugees.
The puppet’s name is Little Amal. Standing 12-feet tall, she has already been touring the world.
Now, she is scheduled to travel 6,000 miles to San Diego as part of a journey that started with Thursday’s event.
“Once we get going like we did today, we don’t stop,” said Little Amal Producer David Lan.
Modeled after a 10-year-old Syrian refugee, Amal has visited 15 countries.
The complex puppet is controlled by three puppeteers, with one on each hand and a third inside walking on stilts.
Lan has been with Amal from her beginnings two years ago and said Amal has been asked to appear all over the world.
“She has a vast online family,” Lan said. “…You go, ‘OK, something of value is happening here.’”
Amal’s visit to the Boston area comes as Gov. Maura Healey has declared a state of emergency over the number of immigrants making their way into the state asking businesses and residents to open their doors to give them a place to stay.
Healey’s decision has been met by some with resistance. This week, 14 state Republicans sent a letter to Healey saying the state is unprepared to take the influx of migrants.
The crowd gathered to meet Amal struck a different tone on Thursday, hoping a puppet can bring some real life relief.
“I think we sometimes get overwhelmed with the news and all the struggles that we’re facing and then art comes along and theater and it grabs us and it moves our hearts and it gives us energy and gives us hope,” said Diane Paulus of the American Repertory Theater.
Little Amal has a series of events scheduled over the next few days around Massachusetts. She will then spend a day in Hartford, Conn. before moving south and onward toward San Diego.
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