This 2016 Olympics, the entire world welcomes Team Refugee, a team comprising of six men and four women from different nationalities who have had to flee their motherlands in the face of strife and conflict. (In fact, Yusra Mardini, a courageous woman who tirelessly swam for three and a half hours pushing a boat carrying her sister and 19 other people from war-torn Syria to relative safety , just won the Olympics 100m Butterfly Heat.) This is a momentous and meaningful turn of events, and there’s probably no fan more enthusiastic — or furrier and bluer — than Sesame Street’s Grover.
Watch the video below:
Team Refugee Fan Testimonial: Grover from Sesame Street from Purpose on Vimeo.
It is heartwarming to see how Grover explains the plight of refugees to children watching at home with great sensitivity, openness, and sincerity. Sesame Street is no stranger to tackling difficult topics and explaining them to children in an emotionally positive manner. An iconic episode in 1983 addressed the death of Mr. Hooper. Kami, a character from the South-African version of the show called Takalani Sesame, who spoke openly of being HIV-positive. In 2015, Sesame Street, introduced Julia, a character with autism, to include neuro-atypical children and their parents in the community.
More people are now coming forward to cheer Team Refugee on. Samantha Power, the US Ambassador to the United Nations, shared one athlete’s struggle and journey to the games:
At 13, James fled #SouthSudan to avoid becoming child soldier, now hopes to inspire others at #Rio2016 #TeamRefugees pic.twitter.com/GDQd6FDg4w
— Samantha Power (@AmbassadorPower) August 3, 2016
Filippo Grandi, the UM High Commissioner for Refugees, also sent the team his good wishes.
Swimmer #YusraMardini‘s achievement: from fleeing war to winning her first @Olympics heat. Go #TeamRefugees! pic.twitter.com/STbq0ZQVV8
— Filippo Grandi (@RefugeesChief) August 6, 2016
Danny Glover and Nobel-Prize laureate Malala Yousafzai stood in solidarity with Team Refugee.
I’m cheering for @TeamRefugees in Rio. They’re spreading msgs of hope for refugees around the world! #TeamRefugees pic.twitter.com/LL5FwIBjUN
— Danny Glover (@mrdannyglover) August 5, 2016
“Dear refugee sisters & brothers, you are the world’s team. We stand with you.” — Malala’s message to #TeamRefugees pic.twitter.com/schExtBdNt
— Malala Fund (@MalalaFund) August 5, 2016
We at SND are also sending you are very best, Team Refugee! Go for Gold!