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Sesame Street in Communities Provides Child Trauma Resources Through Comfy Cozy Spaces in Indianola, Leland

Posted on: October 21, 2019

Representatives from Sesame Workshop, the non-profit organization behind Sesame Street, were in the Mississippi Delta recently to provide updated training for Delta Health Alliance employees on how to identify and work with children who have experienced traumatic events through the Sesame Street in Communities program.

“When a child has a traumatic experience, such as a death in the family, incarceration of a loved one, loss of their home, or parental divorce, they do not always have the tools to deal with the impact of the trauma,” said Carolyn Willis, Vice President of Education Programs for Delta Health Alliance. “There are coping strategies and resilience-building techniques that can help a child navigate the complexity of all the emotions that come with a traumatic experience. Our partners at Sesame Street in Communities package those strategies and techniques with their lovable Muppet characters, and children instantly relate and trust the message.”

Comfy Cozy Spaces aim to serve as safe, comforting havens for children ages 0-6. Using the beloved Sesame Street Muppets as agents for comfort, these spaces feature media-based tools from Sesame Street in Communities to bolster children’s self-confidence and provide a supportive outlet for identifying and expressing their emotions.

The training workshop included an introduction to the Sesame Street In Communities website, www.SesameStreetinCommunities.org, which offers free resources to both partners and parents to support young children on a range of topics. Visitors can search by topic and can also choose the resources by age of the child. Storybooks, videos, printables, articles, and interactive workshops are available in English and Spanish, each featuring lovable characters from Sesame Street.

Through the Sesame Street in Communities program, Sesame Workshop has built on their 50-year commitment to addressing children’s developmental, physical, and emotional needs and addressing the most challenging issues facing children. They have partnered with eight communities in the U.S. and came to Leland and Indianola in 2018 in partnership with Delta Health Alliance. Together, the two organizations connect parents and caregivers through DHA’s network of school, community, and home-based programs, reaching underserved children and families and providing resources for health and education providers to use when addressing difficult conversations with the families they serve.

Sesame Street in Communities’ services and resources, including the “Comfy Cozy Spaces” are available through Delta Health Alliance’s Leland Medical Clinic located at 201 Baker Blvd. Additional Comfy Cozy Corners are planned for Sunflower County Head Start / Early Head Start sites, throughout Sunflower County, the newest Delta Health Alliance venture to address early childhood education and kindergarten readiness.

Support for Leland and Sunflower County is made possible thanks to funding from the Robert Wood Johnson Foundation and the Joan Ganz Cooney Fund for Vulnerable Children.

About Sesame Workshop
Sesame Workshop is the nonprofit educational organization behind Sesame Street, the pioneering television show that has been reaching and teaching children since 1969. Today, Sesame Workshop is an innovative force for change, with a mission to help kids everywhere grow smarter, stronger, and kinder. We’re present in more than 150 countries, serving vulnerable children through a wide range of media, formal education, and philanthropically-funded social impact programs, each grounded in rigorous research and tailored to the needs and cultures of the communities we serve. For more information, please visit www.sesameworkshop.org.

About Delta Health Alliance
Delta Health Alliance has overseen over $225 million in research and service grants from the U.S. Departments of Education, Agriculture and Justice, the Center for Medicare and Medicaid Services, the Agency for Healthcare Research and Quality (AHRQ), the Health Research and Services Administration (HRSA), the Office of the National Coordinator, and numerous foundations and state contract awards. Our programs have successfully accomplished milestones such as development and maintenance of an interconnected and regional electronic health record system, clinic-based programs, care transitions programs to coordinate inpatient and outpatient care, delivery of literacy programs, maternal and infant wellness programs, pregnancy prevention programs, early childhood programs, and health and wellness services. Delta Health Alliance has also successfully completed a recipient capability audit from the Department of Health and Human Services with no significant findings and has a policies and procedures manual that is used as the “gold standard” for rural non-profits, according to our Program Officer at the Office of Rural Health. To learn more about Delta Health Alliance, go to www.deltahealthalliance.org or follow DHA on social media.