Meet Sesame Street's amazing Julia.
Julia, friends with Elmo and Abby Cadabby, has autism. She is the first autistic character to move onto Sesame Street. With her bright green eyes and orange hair, Julia is an eye-catching character. She appears in the We're Amazing 1,2,3! storybook by author Leslie Kimmelman. Julia is a long-time friend of Elmo, who is newly introduced to Abby Cadabby. Abby is at first confused by some of the things Julia does, but with a little help from Elmo, they become fast friends.
Julia is a part of the Sesame Street and Autism: See Amazing in All Children initiative. The nationwide initiative is a response to the growing number of families affected by autism. In the United States alone, 1 in 68 children is diagnosed with autism spectrum disorder each year.
The program is aimed at families and communities with children in the 2-5 year age bracket. The initiative website says the program "offers families ways to overcome common challenges and simplify everyday activities. At the same time, the project fosters an affirming narrative around autism for all families and kids."
Along with the online storybook, the Sesame Street and Autism website has a video for the Amazing Song and online resources for families.
Kudos to the Sesame Street Workshop for showing the world how amazing all kids are.