The Friendship Caravan , Inc. is a 501 (c) (3) not-for-profit American organization dedicated to promoting multi-cultural understanding, caring, and mutual respect through educational programs, humanitarian outreach, discussions and media-friendly events. Founded in the aftermath of September 11, 2001, the Caravan is focused for the foreseeable future on developing bridges of mutual acceptance and compassion between Americans and people in the Arab and Muslim world. Our programs are non-political; they reach out to and include all constituencies. In 2010-11, they are focused, in particular, on two arenas: 1) friendship between Americans and people of The Kingdom of Morocco; and 2) the humanitarian needs of the people of the Azawak, a vast region stretching from The Republic of Niger into the Republic of Mali.

See the Friendship Caravan Mission Statement.


Damana and the Book of The Lost Secrets:
Poetry and Music Tour in the U.S.

The Friendship Caravan is pleased to announce that it is bringing the DAMANA music-poetry troupe of Morocco to tour the USA next spring, in cooperation with two Moroccan associations, "La Fondation des Cultures du Monde" and "Planète Citoyenne ".

The brainchild of renowned Moroccan poet-statesman Driss Alaoui Mdaghri, DAMANA's fusion-world-style performance offers a distinctive message of peace and bridge-building from the Arab and Muslim world to the American people. The expressed hope is simple -- in music and poetry we can find the seeds of conflict resolution, by helping us shine the sunshine of beauty into shadows of suffering and warfare.

Coming out of Morocco, this message of world fellowship and beauty as a source of power is especially important as a gift of hope from a nation that is one of America's oldest friends in the Arab/Muslim world.

Fresh off successful tours in Italy and Morocco, DAMANA will visit several cities on the East Coast, as well as a few in Arizona and elsewhere. Stay tuned for more information in the next few weeks.

Read more about Damana, watch a YouTube video of the group, and listen to a recording.

We hope you will all find a way to see this very special group when they are touring America, and partake in its very special offering of peace.

The Amman Imman Program Brings Water to Those Who Have None

The Friendship Caravan is especially proud to launch Amman Imman (“Water Is Life” in Tamachek, the language of the Tuareg people of Niger and Mali) as a humanitarian branch of its expanding activities. Created and directed by Caravan board member Ariane Kirtley, Amman Imman is a program to build permanent and sustainable water sources for the most severely threatened Amman Imman director Ariane Kirtley with children of the Azawak region of Niger, West Africapopulations in the southern Sahara, starting in the Azawak region of the Republic of Niger, one of the most abandoned places on Earth.

The ongoing tragedy of the 500,000 inhabitants of the Azawak (mainly Tuareg and Woodabe Fulani nomads) is that for nine months out of the year there is literally no water, other than at distances of 30 miles or more. Because of this, their lives are limited to coping with survival, and one out of two children dies before the age of five. Compounding the problem is the total lack of infrastructure and the refusal of other aid organizations to work in such enduringly harsh conditions.

Everyone concurs that the first step towards a solution to the escalating catastrophe of the Azawak is water. Luckily water does exist there, in underground aquifers at depths of 400 to 1200 feet. The objective for winter 2006-07 is build two deep borehole wells that will serve the needs of 50,000 children and adults. At the same time we will explore the expansion of the project further into the Azawak and into similarly abandoned regions in the Republic of Mali.

The first year’s budget is $280,000. Mainly through the generosity of amazing individuals over the past three months, Amman Imman has already raised $130,000, with an additional pledge of $100,000. Therefore, we still need to raise at least $60,000 before December and humbly ask for your support.

Your donations are needed now to stop people from dying! Please click here to make a donation.

Click here to go to the Amman Imman web site.

Please help Bintou survive another year   Tameinut drinking the last drop of precious liquid


The Friendship Caravan Partners With Royal Air Maroc

The Friendship Caravan is pleased to announce that Royal Air Maroc, the flagship carrier of the Kingdom of Morocco, is a major sponsor of several of our events, including Friendship Fest in Marrakech, the Morocco-America Business Forum in Fez, and the June visit to Morocco of American TV star Jorja Fox. To find out more about the airline with more than 50 years of experience, visit

Friendship Fest in Marrakech May 6-8 2005

Friendship Fest Morocco will be a celebration of shared values and friendship through music that is anticipated will draw at least 20,000 people from all over the world – including Moroccans, Americans, and Europeans. The high point will be a three-day music festival featuring American pop groups and both modern and traditional groups from Morocco. Already numerous well-known American groups have generously offered to perform in Morocco without compensation, among them Newsboys, Jeremy Camp, Delirious, Joy Williams, Out of Eden, and Phil Keaggy.

Moroccan diva Karima Skalli will also participate.

  Visit the Friendship Fest Morocco web site

  Information about the Kingdom of Morocco (Word 181 kb)

  Morocco Links

About the Friendship Caravan

  Caravan Overview

  Why the Friendship Caravan?

The mission of The Friendship Caravan Inc. is fourfold:

   To promote grass roots people-to-people friendship and mutual respect, through cross-cultural events designed to attract local, national, and international media attention.

   To develop humanitarian assistance from Americans to world populations severely threatened by drought, political situations, and other harsh conditions.

   To promote models for courteous and effective communication among people of different religious backgrounds.

   To bring hope and optimism for a better future to a world filled with fear and uncertainty

Our Founding Principles

 The Friendship Caravan seeks to remind all people of our common humanity and the need for mutual respect and caring.

  Friendly people-to-people communication must become an integral component of international relations.

  New models for cross-cultural discourse are needed in which religious, educational, and service organizations, and the mass media, play essential roles.

  Cooperation towards mutual goals helps foster understanding, respect, and peace.


The Friendship Caravan is a series of events and programs organized under the aegis of The Friendship Caravan, Inc., a 501c3 non-profit tax-exempt organization. A Board of Directors and a Board of Advisors have been chosen from among pre-eminent individuals in the United States, Europe, the Arab and Muslim World, and elsewhere.

President and Board Member Michael Kirtley has the authority to organize – under the guidance of the Board of Directors – a team of employees and volunteers to promote and manage the various sub-divisions of the overall organization. Over time these will eventually include human resources, fundraising, media coordination, public relations, partner relations, women’s exchange, business development, cultural exchange, youth exchange, documentary production, events within the event, itinerary logistics and authorizations, relations with governments, cultural sensitivity, publications, and historical documentation, among others.


Friendship Caravan events are financed and assisted by individual donors, corporate sponsors, foundations and other non-profit organizations. CONTRIBUTE

The Friendship Caravan Executive Summary

How to contact us (in the USA)

203.468.8313 - office
203 668 7913 - mobile
202.361.0688 - Washington, DC

Postal address:
The Friendship Caravan, Inc.
985 Quinnipiac Avenue
New Haven, CT 06513

Electronic mail:
General Information
Volunteer coordinator
Web master (for technical info)

CV of Michael Kirtley

Caravan logo by Osama Alzain of International Graphics, Inc
Web site design Tim Resch

Current Web Master Tim Resch
Original Web Master Chris Jefferies VP Software Development, Human Resource MicroSystems, SF, CA

  Friendship Caravan Maryland October 21-25, 2003
Gaithersburg, Maryland and nearby communities welcomed the “pilot’ Caravan from Tuesday Oct. 21 through Saturday Oct. 25. Citizens participated in the Town Hall Meeting with Arab Ambassadors and attended cultural programs celebrating Arab and American friendship. Read the Final Report (Word 84k) on the very successful Maryland Caravan 2003

Last updated: December 13, 2011

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