Musée du quai Branly - Jacques Chirac


Record attendance at the musée du quai Branly – Jacques Chirac, for the 13th edition of the operation "Un Autre Noël"

For 13 years now, this special collection has been offered every year. The idea: the children of Paris and its region mainly, mobilize and offer toys to children living in refugee or displaced camps. Each year, the Office of the High Commissioner for Refugees (UNHCR), a partner in the operation, proposes a new country to be the destination of this solidarity sled.

On December 26, 668 little French Santas went to the Quai Branly museum and each gave a toy accompanied by a message. The "hood", comprising no less than 22 boxes of toys, will be sent in the coming weeks by Aviation Sans Frontières, this year in Colombia, for refugee and displaced children.

Why Colombia?

This is the first time that the toys collected as part of Another Christmas are sent to the American continent and precisely to Colombia where the situation is, in some regions, dramatic.

Despite the peace agreement signed in late 2016 between the Colombian government and the FARC (Revolutionary Armed Forces of Colombia), violence continues to uproot thousands of Colombians. 

Nearly 8 million internally displaced people have had to seek refuge in other parts of the country. The country is also facing an unprecedented humanitarian challenge with the massive influx of people from Venezuela, fleeing a deteriorating situation (inflation, shortages of food and medicine, violence and political instability). Since the beginning of the crisis, Colombia has welcomed more than one million Venezuelans. UNHCR representatives in Colombia are working closely with the authorities and communities to meet the growing needs of these populations.

How does the collection day take place at the musée du quai Branly – Jacques Chirac?

By donating one of their toys, the children were able to discover Colombian culture and understand a little better how the children who will receive these gifts live.

Articulated around several workshops, this year the public was invited to:

  • make, with the help of the Colombian artist Elena Farah (La Piñata), paper flowers and live, a little, the great flower fair, which is held every year in the city of Medellín
  • make masks typical of the burlesque carnival of Barranquilla with the help of two Colombian artists
  • taste Colombian delicacies and discover the flavors of the country
  • dance, guided by Professor Ronald Quintero, from the Calisabor Dance School, to  learn the basics of the – very fast – salsa "caleña"
  • watch the beautiful animated film The Journey of Lila, directed by Marcela Rincón González
  • listen, during the visit, to the storyteller Catalina Pineda and the musician Juan Garcia

Around these workshops, the children were also able to help make toy boxes, in the company of a mediator and young volunteers from the UEMO of Voisins le Bretonneux, listen to the traditional music broadcast in the museum throughout the day and exchange with members of the museum, UNHCR and Aviation Sans Frontières on this solidarity event. It was also an opportunity for young audiences and parents to better understand the current situation in Colombia through a video from UNHCR Colombia and testimonies from Colombian children and Venezuelan refugees.In partnership with the Interregional Directorate of Judicial Protection of Youth of Île-de-France and Outremer and the Open Environment Educational Unit (UEMO) of Voisins le Bretonneux, young volunteers will guide, accompanied by a mediator, visitors in the preparation of toy boxes that will be transported by Aviation Sans Frontières.


The partners "Another Christmas"

The United Nations Refugee Agency (UNHCR)
UNHCR's mandate is to lead and coordinate international efforts to protect refugees around the world. Its primary purpose is to safeguard the rights and well-being of these people. It thus endeavours to ensure that everyone can exercise the right to seek asylum and to find safe haven in another State.

The Quai Branly Museum – Jacques Chirac
Located on the banks of the Seine, at the foot of the Eiffel Tower, the Musée du quai Branly - Jacques Chirac strives to give the full measure of the importance of the Arts and Civilizations of Africa, Asia, Oceania and the Americas, at the crossroads of multiple cultural, religious and historical influences. In this place of scientific and artistic dialogue, exhibitions, shows, conferences, workshops, screenings punctuate the cultural program.

Open Environment Educational Unit (UEMO) of Voisins le Bretonneux