Dŵr Cymru are the only not-for-profit water company in England and Wales for the last 20 years, and their whole thing is caring about Welsh water and looking after the people that drink it.
Part of what they do is regularly check the water supply to make sure everything is up to scratch and in most cases, it’s been fine, but back in 2014, they detected increasing traces of pesticides in areas where there hadn’t been any before. Which obviously isn’t ideal.
To be honest, the levels weren’t anything to massively worry about, but it did mean that they would have to use more chemicals and energy back in the plant to sort it out, which meant that water prices would go up. So to do something about it, Dŵr Cymru launched a new community project — PestSmart.
To sum it up, PestSmart works with farmers, growers, landowners and gardeners across Wales (basically anyone who uses pesticides) to encourage them to consider ‘smarter’ ways of weed, pest and disease control that don’t impact people, wildlife or you know the entire water supply.
Pretty sound stuff. So when our pals over at Working Word got in touch and asked us to create a series of short explainer animations to help bolster their PR campaign and help raise the word, of course, we pulled up our socks and got to work.
Up until now, the PestSmart campaign had been focusing on commercial farmers, but they were only one part of the issue. Domestic, everyday gardeners were still (unintentionally) contaminating the water by pesticides washing into their drains, so were in need of a bit of education on how and when to use pesticides, and the impact on the environment when they don’t use them safely.
There was only about a month until the campaign’s launch, and they wanted five bilingual videos. Normally that wouldn’t be too much of an issue, but we were already pretty busy during the run-up to March madness, so things were gonna be tight.
Luckily this kind of thing is our bread and butter, so once the team over at Dŵr Cymru had sent over all their assets and we’d tightened up the scripts, we took to the project like a hwyaden to water.