Meet Sesame Street’s Global Cast of Characters

Over the course of the 40 years that the program has been on the air, Sesame Street has spawned versions in countries around the world

(Sesame Workshop)

Karim (left), and Haneen (right)- Palestinian territory Shara’a Simsim

Kareem and Haneen Sesame Street
(Sesame Workshop)

The character of Karim, a 7-year-old rooster, actively works to counter the stereotype that Arabs are always late, says Sesame Workshop. Shara’a Simsim’s executive director notes that young boys in Palestine feel pressure to defend their families and can get upset when they can’t. Karim was designed to serve as a proud role model for these boys. Karim’s friend Haneen, an outgoing 5-year-old girl Muppet, helps empower young Palestinian girls. While the show does not make direct references to the Israeli-Palestinian conflict, messages are included that help children cope with the ideas of acceptance and tolerance.


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