Meet Ameera! Sesame Street’s New Character Uses A Wheelchair & Forearm Crutches
Ameera make her big debut on Ahlan Simsim, the local version of Sesame Street in the Middle East and North Africa.
There’s a new friend on Sesame Street! Meet Ameera, a fun-loving 8-year-old girl passionate about science, telling jokes, and playing basketball. She also uses a purple wheelchair or forearm crutches to get around due to a spinal cord injury. Created by Sesame Workshop in an effort to bring joy to children affected by conflict and crisis and bring representation of children with disabilities to TV, Ameera will make her debut next week on Ahlan Simsim (“Welcome Sesame” in Arabic), the local version of Sesame Street in the Middle East and North Africa.
“Ameera continues Sesame Workshop’s long history of creating diverse characters that children around the world can relate to, and we are so excited to welcome this exuberant 8-year-old girl to our cast of beloved Sesame Muppets,” Scott Cameron, head of international production at Sesame Workshop, said in a statement. “Ameera was in development for over two years and was designed with the guidance of inclusion advisors who helped ensure that her identity, movements, and equipment were representational.”
Ameera utilizes her natural leadership skills to encourage others, although sometimes she forgets to include her friends’ ideas in her plans, according to Sesame Workshop. She has a great sense of humor and a bright personality, which is seen in her cute interactions with other friends on Ahlan Simsim, including well-known faces Elmo, Grover (Gargur), Cookie Monster (Kaki), and new friends, Basma, Jad, and Ma’zooza.
Ahlan Simsim is part of a wider humanitarian program of the same name by Sesame Workshop in partnership with the International Rescue Committee (IRC) and made possible by historic support from the MacArthur Foundation. It brings vital early learning content to children who live in Iraq, Jordan, Lebanon, and Syria. But even if you don’t live in one of those areas, your kiddos can still watch Ameera.
Ameera will be featured in Sesame Workshop’s new global Watch, Play, Learn animated videos designed for kids ages 3 to 8. The videos are part of the Play to Learn program, an initiative in partnership with the LEGO Foundation, BRAC, and IRC to bring playful learning opportunities to kids affected by the Rohingya and Syrian refugee crises.
“Thoughtfully designed to challenge stereotypes and reflect children’s lived experiences, Ameera brings visibility to the more than 12 million displaced persons and 240 million children worldwide estimated to have a disability as well as to the important role of girls in STEM,” Sherrie Westin, president of Sesame Workshop, said in a statement. “At a time when more children than ever before are affected by conflict and displacement, Ameera also highlights the urgent need for creative and flexible approaches to delivering playful learning and early education to communities affected by crisis.”
Welcome to the coolest street in the world, Ameera!