Meet Zari, an Afghan girl and muppet with an important message
Last April 7, 2016 marked the debut of Afghanistan’s first “Sesame Street” Muppet. And she’s not like just any other muppet.
Zari, whose name translates to “shimmering”, carries a powerful message for young girls.
She made her debut on “Baghch-e-Simsim,” the Afghanistan version of the beloved children’s show.
“She’s here to teach young kids about girls’ empowerment!” Sesame Street said on Twitter, adding later on that Zari is “an incredible role model for kids around the world.”
— Sesame Street (@sesamestreet) April 7, 2016
Donning a red-and-gold dress paired with a cream-colored hijab, the new empowering muppet will be tackling important topics such as “girls’ empowerment, national identity, physical health, and social and emotional well-being”.
This 6-year-old muppet dreams of becoming a doctor one day and so she’ll be interviewing pediatricians about health and how she can achieve her dream; this is making a powerful statement in a country like Afghanistan where women’s rights are still being fought for daily.
But even before she made her TV debut, Zari made her first public appearance in New York City at the Women in the World Summit. A well-attended event where she met the first lady of Afghanistan, Rula Ghani.
“The exciting part about Zari is that she is modeling for young girls that it is wonderful to go to school and that it’s OK to dream about having a career,” Sesame Workshop’s executive vice president of global impact and philanthropy, Sherrie Westin, told Reuters. “It’s so powerful that the first Afghan Muppet is a girl.”
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