Twenty years on, Takalani Sesame is still showing how educational TV can change lives

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Elmo and the gang from Takalani Seasme. Picture: Takalani Sesame/Facebook
Elmo and the gang from Takalani Seasme. Picture: Takalani Sesame/Facebook

Twenty years ago, I was fortunate enough to be part of a momentous occasion in Soweto.

The launch of Takalani Sesame – South Africa’s very own version of Sesame Street – was a joyous day, with excitement in the air as the country’s new Muppets and Muppeteers were introduced to the public.

There was also a palpable sense of hope – that bringing South African preschoolers and their caregivers a quality early-learning programme through mass media, bolstered by outreach activities, would make a meaningful difference in a country where seven out of eight children had no exposure to early childhood development services.

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