Sesame Street in Communities

 
 

Sesame Street in Communities

 
 

Sesame Street in Communities

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Sesame Street in Communities builds on Sesame Street’s 50-year commitment to addressing the developmental, physical, and emotional needs of children

ARTICLE
Sesame Street will help
Memphis kids with their ACEs

Sesame Street in Communities (SSIC) partners with local organizations to embed tools and resources into programs that serve vulnerable children and families. SSIC provides hundreds of bilingual, multi-media tools to help kids and families enrich and expand their knowledge during the early years of birth through six, a critical window for brain development. These resources engage kids and adults in everyday moments and daily routines—from teaching early math and literacy concepts, to encouraging families to eat nutritious foods, to serious topics such as divorce and food insecurity.

By connecting caregivers with community leaders, SSIC is building a circle of care to help kids—especially the most vulnerable—get off to a strong and healthy start.

SSIC works with its partners to “Sesametize” their communities through onboarding to understand the SSIC model, create actions plans, announce the partnership and engage the community; implement the model and gather impact data; and plan for sustainability by expanding and integrating the work across an organization, capturing and sharing best practices.

The following cities are current SSIC Partners:

 

Baltimore, Maryland

Camden, New Jersey

Greater Des Moines, Iowa

Guilford County, North Carolina

Kansas City, Kansas

Kansas City, Missouri

Leland and Indianola, Mississippi

Los Angeles, California

Maricopa County, Arizona

Memphis, Tennessee (ACE Awareness Foundation and Porter-Leath)

Miami, Florida 

Transylvania County, North Carolina

Every day, the SSIC partners are working to make a difference by helping kids and families grow smarter, stronger, and kinder by uniting communities, fostering families’ and kids’ resilience, nurturing their physical and mental health, and providing critical early learning opportunities. ACE Awareness Foundation is an important part of the “circle of care” that surrounds the families and children who need it most. 

Sesame Street in Communities builds on our almost 50-year commitment to addressing kids’ developmental, physical, and emotional needs. Its time-tested research model and thorough testing with families and providers ensures that the resources being used have a measurable impact in the lives of parents and children.

Sesame Street in Communities Resiliency Tools Are Helping Families Cope with ACEs

The Robert Wood Johnson Foundation and Sesame Street partnered to help families cope with traumatic experiences and foster nurturing connections between children and the caring adults in their lives. Understanding that childhood experiences lay the foundation for children to grow to be productive and successful adults, Sesame Workshop launched an initiative in 2017 to help children cope with ACEs. While trauma can seriously impact a child’s development, children are remarkably resilient, and the effects of trauma can be lessened if they receive comfort and support.

With support from the Robert Wood Johnson Foundation and other funders, Sesame Workshop developed a series of tools and resources to build coping skills and foster nurturing connections between child and the caring adults in their lives. These new materials are part of Sesame Street in Communities and include videos, storybooks, and digital activities that are research-driven and produced in consultation with experts in childhood development, brain development, and trauma. These tools, which are being used by staff at the Universal Parenting Places, highlight strategies that can be used by social workers, therapists, health care providers, and educators that, combined with the consistent presence of caring adults, are proven to lessen the impact of traumatic experiences on young children.

The materials, in English and Spanish, feature the Sesame Street Muppets that children know and love—and that parents trust. For example, “Comfy-Cozy Nest” features Big Bird talking through his big feelings and envisioning his nest as a safe space, and seven “Mantra Moment” videos feature Elmo, Abby Cadabby, the Count, and other Muppets modeling simple coping strategies like “Count, Breathe, Relax,” “I Can Let My Feelings Out,” and “Give Yourself a Hug.”

In addition to content for children, the Universal Parenting Place staff have access to professional development resources and adult-facing content, including a first-of-its-kind animation for provider training and for providers to use with parents and caregivers to help them understand the impact of domestic violence from a child’s perspective; simple strategies for parents and community providers that can be used easily and repeatedly; and professional development workshops and webinars.

Sesame Street in Communities COVID-19 Resources

Earlier this year, Sesame Workshop launched the Caring for Each Other initiative – a commitment to supporting families throughout the COVID-19 crisis. Included are a new topic page on Sesame Street in Communities, animations on healthy habits, resources providing comfort, and learn-at-home activities on topics including reading, math, and science.

  • On Sesame Street in Communities, there is Health Emergencies, a new topic page created especially with parents and caregivers in mind. The resources on this page are meant to bolster connections between providers and families, as well as within families. Activities can be shared via social media or email and can even be done “together” over video calls.
  • On Sesame Street and Streets around the world, animated public service announcements are available in 18 languages and feature Elmo’s new “Washy Wash” song, as well as the Muppets learning how to sneeze properly and how caring for yourself means caring for each other. These public service announcements are being distributed through a wide range of media partners, including the Ad Council, Univision, PBS, YouTube and other international broadcasters.
  • Online at SesameStreet.org/caring, additional tools are available that include coping strategies, child-friendly explanations to tough questions, and ways to help everyone stay healthy. Also included are self-care tips for caregivers: as grownups try to create a new sense of normalcy, it’s important that they take care of themselves so that they can best care for their children.

Sesame Street has long been a source of comfort for children and families during difficult times, and now more than ever, we are reminded of the tremendous power of its characters to provide support.