Waste management company Tedcor has introduced its own set of Teddy Bears to inspire the youth to pay more attention to global environmental concerns.
“We really liked the idea of playing the company name ‘Tedcor’ off of the ‘Teddy Bear’ because of the natural fit in terms of the similarity of name and the global popularity and association of the bear,” says Verona Ismail, CEO of Tedcor. “Our research led us to the US President after whom the bear was originally named, Theodore Roosevelt. To our delight and surprise, we found out that he was a champion of environmental causes in a time when there was no official environmental movement. The synergies between the Teddy and what Tedcor does in terms of waste management convinced us it was a winner.”
After engaging with staff to help choose names for the new bear duo, the two most popular names were S’Camtho for the Papa Bear and Thandanani for his daughter. The names mean “togetherness” for the dad and “empowering people” for the daughter, which speak to the character strengths of each bear – dads tend to bring families together, while kids are the future and need to be nurtured and empowered.
“We like to think of them as ‘mascots for the movement,’” Ismail shares. “In previously disadvantaged communities, environmental care is not regarded as a high priority. South Africa has a large population of young people, so it is our belief that our bears will resonate with this youth and get our message of waste management across, so that kids can learn how to look after their immediate environment. They are our future, so the message starts with them.”