Sesame Street to launch Arabic-language show for refugee children to help them deal with trauma


When you're talking with your family and friends at your table this weekend. What are you GONNA be talking? Yeah well I have a three year old daughter and a five year old son and so we will be talking a lot about sesame street this week which celebrated its golden anniversary anniversary. Did you watch this mystery as a kid I did. Yeah Jessica what about you absolutely. And who are your favorite characters. I was always partial to Mr snuffle up this big bird's imaginary best friend and go what about you. I did love big bird a lot. And Ernie and Bert really really were probably my favorites. Though actually wonderful and I was dismayed to find out recently watching it with my children that Mr Smith Aleph guess is no longer I quote unquote quote figment of big birds imagination. Everyone sees him. It was very disappointing to the ranks of the real monsters. Wow that's like saying the tooth fairy doesn't exist well. My favorite character was kermit the frog especially his portrayal of TV news reporter which should come as no surprise But I might soon have a new favorite character and his name is John. John has been introduced to children will be introduced to children in Syrian refugee camps as has one of them he is the Star of Alan Simpson or welcome sesame an Arabic language version of sesame street that has been co produced by sesame workshop and the the International Rescue Committee it teaches letters and numbers. Yes but it also teaches emotional coping measures for the millions. Yes millions of children who have been traumatically they displaced from their homes and may remain displaced for decades especially as countries like the United States. Continue to cut the number of refugees at allows in twelve million Elian refugees. Twelve million six million of them are children and those are the stats get this only two percent of humanitarian aid for education in For refugees two percent and so once again sesame street has come to the rescue just as it did in the late nineteen sixty s when it first debuted John his friend Bosma and Friendly Goat Maza debut in twenty countries across the Middle East in February twenty twenty via satellite dishes in the refugee camps. And from time to time there will be guest appearances by Cookie Monster Grover and elmo. I have to say cookie monster was one of my favorites as well. The project is funded with a one hundred million dollar grant from the Macarthur Foundation and the grant also covers direct services to the families whose children have never been outside the camps and therefore they don't know fundamentals that we take for granted such as imagination or basic information like fish. Come from the sea while the focus will be more on emotional tools these fundamentals annals will also be covered as well and I really do applaud sesame workshop for taking this project on and I say. AJC is also exploring new ways to reach out to The era world in the Arabic language. And we'll be hearing more about that in the months to come but this project in particular is just really fascinating to me. And that's what we'll be talking about at our Table

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