‘Sesame Street’ Tackles Opioid Crisis With Muppet Character Whose Mother Has an Addiction (Video)

New Initiative is part of “Sesame Street in Communities” program

Last Updated: October 10, 2019 @ 8:46 AM

“Sesame Street” is launching a new infinitive to support children who have parents battling opioid addiction.

Sesame Workshop, the non-profit educational organization behind the long-running children’s show, launched the new initiative which sees Karli, a six and a half year-old Muppet, whose mom is dealing with addiction. Sesame Workshop is putting a slew of short-form videos and other content, all of which can be found here, as part of its “Sesame Street in Communities” program.

Karli was first introduced on “Sesame Street” in May 2019 as the face of the group’s foster care initiative. The video above sees Elmo’s dad, Louie, explaining addiction to Elmo.

According to data provided by Sesame Workshop, there are 5.7 million children under the age of 11 (one in eight children) that live in households with a parent who has a substance abuse disorder. The group continued that one in three of these children will enter foster care due to parental addiction, a number that has grown by more than 50% in the past decade.

“Addiction is often seen as a ‘grown-up’ issue, but it impacts children in ways that aren’t always visible. Having a parent battling addiction can be one of the most isolating and stressful situations young children and their families face,” said Sherrie Westin, president of Social Impact and Philanthropy, Sesame Workshop. “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.”

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