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Total South Africa Road Safety Cube Initiative educates learners about the dangers on the road

An interactive approach to education

In line with Total South Africa’s commitment to safety and the launch of the Decade of Action for Road Safety 2011-2020 proclaimed by governments around the world on 2nd March 2010, the Total Group and Total AMO launched its Road Safety Cube Programme in 2010. The programme involves using practical demonstrations and interactive sessions to educate learners about road safety at a young age and to create awareness amongst learners about the rules and signs on the road using interactive training methods and materials such as the red cube branded with Total’s name. It uses road sign icons to teach learners about road safety and good safety habits. The introduction of the Totalgaz mascot, Zaglatot, brought a completely new dimension to the programme by conveying the safety messages in an interactive yet memorable manner. To date, the campaign has made a meaningful impact on 14,200 learners in the Totalgaz Southern African region.

Why this is such an important programme

“Road traffic accidents are a global health problem and a critical obstacle for the sustainable development of society. Reversing the trend requires collaboration and dedication. Too many children are victims of road accidents and Total is committed to teaching them how to be aware of the dangers of the road,” says, Pansy Mekwa, General Manager of Strategy at Total South Africa.

Data presented at the Global Road Safety Partnership’s (GRSP) 3rd Africa Road Safety Seminar held in Cape Town in August 2014 demonstrated that road traffic injury is the leading cause of death among those aged 15 to 19 and the second leading cause of death for those aged 5 to 14.

Partnering with Government to maximize results

Recently, with the help of the Western Cape Education Department, Totalgaz successfully introduced the ‘magic’ educational cubes in 15 primary schools and non-profit early childhood development centres, located around the Western Cape and Gauteng areas within South Africa.

In South Africa, Total formed a private-public-partnership with District 14 in Soweto, Johannesburg in 2012 where various educational materials such as road signs, road markings and general instruction manuals are used to educate school children about the dangers of road usage and about precautionary measures in order to prevent youth from becoming victims on the road. Through the partnership, the Road Safety Cube Programme was introduced to Grade 3 learners as per the recommendation from the Department of Education. To ensure the programme was effectively implemented in Soweto, teacher training was conducted in 2012 and over 80 educators consisting of 2 teachers per school participated in the training programme, as did unemployed youth. To date 3,000 learners in Soweto have received education on road safety signs and the dangers of not adhering to road safety rules.

Start with the basics

Prior to starting the programme, all learners in District 14 in Soweto underwent pre-assessment evaluations to assess their understanding of road signs and road rules. After completing the training, they are also tested through a post assessment evaluation to assess the effectiveness of the training and since the implementation of the programme. Results reflect a vast improvement in their understanding of road signs.

“The success of this programme can be attributed to the highly committed innovative approach of the staff of Totalgaz and Total South Africa who made sure that the important road safety messages were conveyed in an interactive and fun-filled manner,” concludes Mekwa.

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