In response to the ongoing coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19) pandemic, Sesame Street, Walgreens, and AT&T have announced an expansion of the ‘Caring for Each Other’ initiative to help children stay health and adjust to the current situation.1

“These are stressful days for everyone, and children and families are struggling in their own ways,” said Jeanette Betancourt, EdD., senior vice president of US Social Impact for Sesame Workshop, in a statement. “Together with AT&T and Walgreens, we can help families through the different challenges and transitions they are experiencing during this pandemic—giving them the tools they need to build hope for sunnier days ahead.”1

Caring for Each Other was created to help children and families dealing with uncertainty, and includes resources for parents, teachers, and children.1

These resources include ways to help children deal with missing friends, encourage healthy habits, and celebrate workers in their neighborhoods, including pharmacists. Bilingual resources for the children of frontline workers will roll out on an ongoing basis, as well as professional development tools for community providers such as health care providers, social workers, and educators.1

A statement from Richard Ashworth, president of Walgreens, pointed out that pharmacies are a major source of community during lockdowns, as one of the only open places where patients can find resources and information from local pharmacists and technicians.1

“Now, it is more important than ever in these unprecedented times, that we explain to children about essential workers and their roles while also celebrating their extraordinary care,” Ashworth said in the statement.1

The Caring for Each Other initiative will also include a Sesame Street video to be released that features the Muppets thanking these “Super Families.”1

Sesame Street has a history of helping children deal with difficult and complex topics. In 2019, the show introduced a new storyline with a character named Karli to help children whose families have been impacted by the opioid epidemic in the United States.2

Additionally, Caring for Each Other content will cover topics including coping with the illness of a family member, financial insecurity, grief, and how to transition into a new normal.1

“We know we must continue to serve and support our customers and patients during this time, and this presents a unique opportunity to provide resources to families of essential workers, like our team members,” Ashworth said. “As we look to explain this unexplainable pandemic to children nationwide, there is no better partner than our friends that live on Sesame Street.1

AT&T’s involvement with Caring for Each Other is part of its $10 million Distance Learning and Family Connections Fund, created to support parents, students, and teachers during this period of at-home learning.1


REFERENCE
  1. Sesame Workshop Launches Major Expansion of Caring for Each Other Initiative, with support from Walgreens and AT&T, to Help Parents and Children During COVID-19 Pandemic [news release]. Walgreens; April 28, 2020. https://news.walgreens.com/covid-19/press-releases-1/sesame-workshop-launches-major-expansion-of-caring-for-each-other-initiative-with-support-from-walgreens-and-att-to-help-parents-and-children-during-covid-19-pandemic.htm. Accessed April 29, 2020.
  2. Gershman J. Helping Children Understand the Opioid Epidemic with New Sesame Street Character. Pharmacy Times; October 11, 2019. https://www.pharmacytimes.com/contributor/jennifer-gershman-pharmd-cph/2019/10/helping-children-understand-the-opioid-epidemic-with-new-sesame-street-character. Accessed April 29, 2020.