Join Cincinnati’s Little Amal Celebration with Storytelling and Zine-Making Events


Written by Joe Armstrong, Content Specialist, Downtown Main Library

Little Amal, a 12 foot tall puppet depicting a 10-year-old Syrian girl, has traveled around the world raising awareness about refugee children. On Friday, September 22 at 3 p.m., Little Amal is visiting Cincinnati! Library staff are among the many community partners who will join Little Amal in a walk across the Roebling Bridge. 

Learn more about these events on CHPL's events calendar and read more information about Little Amal's visit to Cincinnati, opens a new window.

Understanding Others

Ahead of Little Amal's visit, the Library is hosting two related book reading and workshop events for kids and teens. The Library, in partnership with Make Tank, Inc., opens a new window and Zinecinnati, opens a new window, will host “Understanding Others: Comic and Zine Making Workshop."

Local high school student Rojina Rai, opens a new window will share her illustrated memoir I Choose to be Courageous about her experience being brave in the face of change after coming to the U.S. as a refugee from Nepal. Afterwards, Zinecinnati will lead participants through a zine-making workshop.  

"Rojina's memoir chronicles her coming to the U.S. as a refugee from Nepal and making the decision to be brave," says Kate Currie, Executive Director of Maketank Inc. and leader of the Illustrated Memoir Project, where Rojina was a student. "Rojina's memoir was recently selected by UNHCR the United Nations refugee agency to be featured on their website in celebration of World Refugee Day."

Two "Understanding Others: Comics and Zine-Making Workshops" are scheduled: 

Join the Community in Welcoming Little Amal

On Friday, Sept. 22, the Library is joining the walk across the Roebling Bridge with Little Amal at 3 p.m. The walk ends at the National Underground Railroad Freedom Center where there will be a celebration with community partners, Cincinnati Mayor Aftab Pureval, and the Cincinnati Chamber Orchestra (CCO). 

The CCO is the lead presenting organization welcoming Amal to Cincinnati in partnerships with the Kroger Wellness Festival, Cincinnati Compass, and National Underground Railroad Freedom Center.

"Amal’s journeys of art and hope celebrate the rich stories of refugees, immigrants, and displaced people, and the communities that welcome them," says Evan Gidley, Executive Director of the Cincinnati Chamber Orchestra. 

There are three ways to participate in welcoming Little Amal:

1. Join the Cincinnati Welcome Team and Walk with Amal (Register here, opens a new window)

    • All registered participants are asked to create and carry a visual art project(s). This could be a welcome banner, a puppet companion, or something distinctly Greater Cincinnati- creativity encouraged! 
    • If you do not belong to a group but would still like to participate, you will be able to sign-up for a visual art projection creation workshop in the weeks leading up to the event. Dates and locations included in the registration form. 

2. Participate in a Different Facet (Register here, opens a new window) 

    • Provide volunteers, exhibit at the Freedom Center, help us promote the event, etc. Registration Deadline: Friday, September 1 at 10 p.m. 

 3. Observe the outdoor event for free (If choosing this option, organizers cannot guarantee access to the Freedom Center due to limited capacity.) 

Learn more about the Library's "Understanding Others: Comics and Zine-Making Workshops" on our website, and about Little Amal's visit to Cincinnati on the Cincinnati Chamber Orchestra's website.