ibusinesslines.com March 24, 2017

Sesame Street Sneak Peeks: Meet Julia, a Muppet Character With Autism

21 March 2017, 02:04 | Myron Mathis

Julia, Sesame Street's newest muppet, is autistic

Sesame Street’ to welcome muppet with autism

Zari, a 6-year-old Afghan girl with a multi-colored wig, debuted last year as a muppet on Afghanistan's version of Sesame Street, called Baghch-e-Simsim. "It's just that Julia has autism".

Abby tells Grover, "You're lucky". She will make her Sesame Street TV debut in April on USA channels HBO and PBS.

Puppeteer Stacey Gordon, whose son is on the autism spectrum, plays "Sesame Street"'s newest cast member.

In April, Sesame Street will introduce Julia, a new muppet who has autism. They introduced divorce when Abby talked about her parents living in different houses. Sesame decided on a two-fold mission for the related campaign "See Amazing in All Children", to give children with autism and their families someone to identify with - and those that don't a window into their world. But now Julia has been brought to life in fine Muppet fettle.

Julia makes her TV debut in the USA on April 10th on HBO and PBS. Additional videos featuring Julia will be available online.

"In the USA, one in 68 children is diagnosed with autism spectrum disorder", Jeanette Betancourt, vice president of US social impact at Sesame Workshop, told the Associated Press. "We think it's a terrific next step for Sesame Street", said Lisa Goring, chief program and marketing officer at Autism Speaks, a USA advocacy organization.

Her name is Julia, and it is hoped she will help the show's young viewers better understand children on the autism spectrum.

"We're modelling the way both children and adults can look at autism from a strength-based perspective: finding things that all children share", she added. Julia is at the heart of this effort.

'So it was a very easy way to show that with a very slight accommodation, they can meet her where she is, ' Ferraro said.

Sesame Street writer Christine Ferraro stressed to 60 minutes that much love and care went into portraying Julia well.

Big Bird is confused and thinks "that maybe she didn't like me". Rather than thinking this odd, her new friends on Sesame Street make it a game.

In her first episode, Big Bird holds out his wing to shake hands with Julia, who is being introduced in the upcoming season.

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