UPDATE: Sesame Street and the Third World
Terrible update to report. A week or so ago I posted about all the different versions of Sesame Street from around the world. The one that particularly impressed me was the one from Palestine known as Sharaa Simsim which helped kids deal with their feelings of helplessness and anxiety. Sharaa Simsim, however, is now in trouble.
To punish Palestine for appealing to the UN for statehood, the US Congress has suspended funding of nearly $200 million to the US Agency for International Development. This affects a broad range of services in Palestine relying on American aid, including hospitals, education and government ministries. It also affects Sharaa Simsim. This series that provided some comfort and hope for Palestinian kids, has also had its funding cut off and has therefore been halted.
The US is, however, investing $750,000 into the Israeli version of the show, Rechov Sumsum.