Sesame Street introduces a new Muppet who's in foster care — meet Karli!

Sesame Street creators hope the story of Karli will shed light on different types of families and the love they share.
Sesame Street has introduced a new character named Karli, a young Muppet in foster care.
Sesame Street has introduced a new character named Karli, a young Muppet in foster care.@sesamestreet/Twitter

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By Alyssa Newcomb

Sesame Street hopes highlighting the story of its newest Muppet Karli, who is in foster care, will shed light on different types of families and the love they share.

The friendly yellow-haired Muppet, who is friends with Elmo, lives with her "for-now" parents. In one video, Karli's foster mom tells her pal Elmo that she's caring for Karli and will "keep her safe until her mommy can take care of her again."

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Elmo asks when that might be and Karli's foster mom tells him she isn't sure, but "what we do know is that Karlie belongs here now."

Karli's arrival on Sesame Street comes at the perfect time. May is National Foster Care Month. There are more than 440,000 children and youth in foster care in the United States, according to the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services.

As Sesame Street's ambassador, Karli is bringing comfort to kids like her, while also teaching a new generation how families can come in many different forms.

While there have been plenty of familiar faces on Sesame Street over the years, from Bert and Ernie to Oscar the Grouch, the 50-year-old program has also introduced new ones to help teach children kindness and compassion.

Last year, the program welcomed Lily, a 7-year-old homeless Muppet, shedding light on an issue that effects an estimated 2.5 million kids in the United States.