Sesame Workshop is enlisting the power of the Sesame Street Muppets to tackle a serious problem in America: addiction.
The nonprofit organization behind Sesame Street launched a new initiative that’s specifically designed to support kids and families affected by parental addiction. In a new series of videos and other content, familiar characters, including Elmo and Abby Cadabby, support their friend Karli, a 6 ½-year-old Sesame Street Muppet whose mom is dealing with addiction. The full suite of resources is available free to all as part of the Sesame Street in Communities program.
“Addiction is often seen as a ‘grown-up’ issue, but it impacts children in ways that aren’t always visible,” says Sherrie Westin, president of social impact and philanthropy at Sesame Workshop. “Having a parent battling addiction can be one of the most isolating and stressful situations young children and their families face. Sesame Street has always been a source of comfort to children during the toughest of times, and our new resources are designed to break down the stigma of parental addiction and help families build hope for the future.”
The bilingual videos and other materials — available in English and Spanish — were created in consultation with experts in addiction and early childhood development.
The initiative is supported by the Robert Wood Johnson Foundation and the Joan Ganz Cooney Fund for Vulnerable Children.
Sesame Street continues to celebrate its 50th birthday, with new products, collaborations, and initiatives rolling out through the end of the year.