Sesame Workshop, the nonprofit organization best known as the creator of television's Sesame Street, and the Johns Hopkins University Center for Communication Programs, a pioneer in the field of strategic, research-based health communication, now share a common goal.
The two are collaborating on an initiative to help improve the health and lives of children and the families who care for them in the developing world.
The arrangement was announced Feb. 25 in New York by Gary E. Knell, president and CEO of Sesame Workshop, and Jane Bertrand, director of JHU/CCP.
Working together, the organizations will identify opportunities in specific countries and develop and implement communication programs, campaigns and messages to educate the public about positive health behaviors. The activities may include television coproductions, public service announcements, outreach materials and advocacy events. Special focus may be placed on reducing the stigma associated with HIV/AIDS, educating HIV/AIDS orphans and fostering mutual respect and understanding.
"Sesame Workshop's mission is to create innovative, engaging content that helps children reach their highest potential," Knell said. "Johns Hopkins University Center for Communication Programs is a leader in health communication and has established long-standing relationships in promoting healthful behaviors in developing countries. We're proud and fortunate to combine our resources and expertise to help raise healthy and productive children around the world."
Speaking for JHU/CCP, Bertrand said, "We believe that combining forces with Sesame Workshop provides a unique opportunity to develop programs designed to improve children's lives. Together we can have a significant impact in developing countries, particularly those hard hit by HIV/AIDS."
The first country and details of a health initiative there will be announced shortly.