A handcrafted mass grave was set up at the National Mall in the country’s capital.
The National Mall in Washington DC was recently filled with nearly a million bones to raise awareness of genocide and ongoing wars in countries like Sudan and Somalia.
The One Million Bones were made from clay and papier-mâché over the last three years with the help of more than 100,000 people in 30 countries. It then took more than 1,000 volunteers, all dressed in white, more than four hours to lay out the mass grave.
Artist Naomi Natale described described the display as a “visible petition” that wasn’t about remembering any specific event. The purpose was to draw attention to genocide in general, and the ongoing atrocities in Burma, the Democratic Republic of Congo, Somalia, Sudan, South Sudan and Syria.
Apart from awareness, there was also a fundraising aspect involved, for every bone created by a student, the Bezos Family Foundation to donated a dollar to CARE’s work fighting poverty in Somalia and the Democratic Republic of the Congo.
Before the bones were removed on Monday, activists trained by the Enough Project also lobbied congress to try and advance specific legislation on Sudan and Congo. More than 200 activists met with staff of more than 90 representatives, keeping bones with them while in the representatives’ offices, hoping to carry the message even further.