Article from Global News

Sesame Street fans are being introduced to a new character named Julia; she has orange hair, green eyes, and autism.

It’s part of Sesame Street’s See Amazing in All Children initiative, which aims to break down barriers and reduce the stigma surrounding the increasingly prevalent condition.  Photo from Sesame Street / Global News.

“With the introduction of Julia, what we’re doing is introducing children to autism earlier,” said Laurie Mawlam, executive director of Autism Canada.

For now, Julia is part of an online initiative aimed at helping children between the ages of two and five better understand the condition. She is in a new storybook for kids, which can be found online and in a free app alongside other interactive tools and resources.

Mawlam said the character will help children recognize autism in others around them.

“Instead of being afraid or confused, they’ll have an example through Sesame Street on how to engage people on the spectrum,” said Mawlam.

“How to show acceptance, and initiate them to be involved in play, which leads to more inclusion.”

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