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The amazing race!

At the Johannesburg zoo…

By Cynthia Pillay

It was the start of the school holidays and whilst other kids lay in bed, enjoying the fact that they won’t be stuck in a classroom for three tremendous weeks, 30 SOAPkidz kids were getting ready for an adventure at the Jhb zoo.

Some of them arrived sleepy whilst others chattered constantly about the day ahead. Kidz were quickly divided into teams and were given a basic geography lesson and some snacks. Between you and me, we were about to turn them loose at the zoo with only a map and a sense of smell for directions because the compasses were buried somewhere.

Pat gave the volunteers a briefing whilst the kids selected names for their teams incorporating their favourite animal. The teams then got into line for the orienteering race and were quickly reassured that getting lost was part of the game. There was quite a lot of excitement as the first point on the map was discovered and then the hunt began for the wall on the southern eastern point.

Teams helped each other navigate the way, and of course the kidz picked up litter along the way ensuring a cleaner South Africa.

At the end of the race, there was a lot of cheering for all the winners and a prize giving ceremony was held. Then it was time for lunch and SOAPkidz gave prizes for the team that collected the most litter.

Some of the kidz headed off home whilst others roamed around the zoo together with some volunteers. The kidz eyes grew bigger and bigger when they saw members of the animal kingdom that they had never seen before, especially the snakes and the crocodiles having lunch. This was certainly an action packed outing and filled with stories to tell all those who missed out. It was definitely a marvellous way to start the school holidays.

Our gratitude goes to the following people who contributed towards this wonderful outing.

  1. RACO for sponsoring the orienteering
  2. Media24 for sponsoring the admission to the zoo fees.
  3. The volunteers who spent time engaging with the kidz

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