The Cape Winelands District Municipality (CWDM) proudly welcomed Lenny the Leopard, our new mascot into the Disaster Management team. Lenny was officially introduced to young learners at Groendal Primary in Franschhoek through an engaging interactive play on Tuesday, 23 May 2023.
The interactive play featured Lenny as the lead character, accompanied by Sara and Mr. Jackson, who educated children on the dos and don’ts of using candles during load shedding, the risks of flooding due to littering, and other important information regarding flooding and fire safety. One of the key teachings of the play is the emergency contact number, ensuring that children know how to seek help in case of an emergency.
During the weeks following the launch, Lenny will visit schools throughout the district, presenting the interactive play to foundation phase learners. Along with the play, Lenny will distribute activity sheets that focus on fire and flooding awareness, reinforcing the key messages delivered during the interactive sessions, these were developed specifically for the project.
Lenny the Leopard will play a vital role in keeping our younger citizens safe from disasters, environmental hazards, and fires. Recognizing that children learn best through play and interaction, Lenny’s presence as a friendly and fun mascot creates an environment in which kids feel comfortable and are receptive to the important topics they are learning.
This mascot was born out of the Partnership for Risk and Resilience (P4RR), a collaboration established in 2019 between CWDM and Santam. One of the goals of the P4RR was to equip municipalities with various resources, including awareness and outreach tools. The CWDM requested the production of a mascot and material to enhance awareness and education programmes.
Santam has furthermore, funded the production of the interactive play for Lenny’s official introduction, which is performed by Spektrum Children’s Theatre.
While Lenny primarily resides within CWDM’s Disaster Management unit, he will also fulfil responsibilities in the Municipal Health Services. In this role, he will lead environmental health awareness programs and assist the Fire Services by teaching fire safety, including the all-important “stop, drop, and roll” technique!
“We want you to take this message home and share what you have learned today with your parents, to help them keep you safe,” expressed Ald Clara Meyer (Portfolio holder: Disaster Management, CWDM) to the learners.