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The Week That Was #218... 5 peeks behind the week at Working Word


Sharing a story of a Welsh-made covid-19 test. A 98-year-old peace message brought bang up to date. Creating a tear-jerking video about Fostering. Hypothesising Orwell’s take in the Times. Encouraging Wales to ‘stay in touch’. It’s been another week at Working Word of comms through the crisis.

Here’s five peeks behind our week…


1. Telling the important story of the Welsh-made covid-19 tests

Ortho Clinical Diagnostics - Life Sciences Hub Wales from Working Word on Vimeo.


Across the country, businesses from a range of industries have been doing their bit to help in the fight against coronavirus.  Over the past few months, we’ve been working with Life Sciences Hub Wales to tell these important stories. Yesterday marked a hopeful milestone: a new made-in-Wales antibody test is being introduced throughout the UK to tell whether people have had coronavirus.  Wales – and the rest of the UK – will roll out the new-style blood tests, including those produced in Pencoed by Ortho Clinical Diagnostics (Ortho).  The company became involved after responding to our call to help with the response from the First Minister and Life Sciences Hub Wales and was covered across the media including on BBC, ITV and Walesonline.


2. A 98-year-old peace message brought bang up to date!


Every year since 1922, the youth of Wales have sent a peace and goodwill message to the world. A lot’s happened in that near century, and like others before it, 2020’s message from the Urdd was delivered at a time of international crisis.  When the covid-19 crisis hit, we helped change focus of the message to one that matters right now.  Our team has worked with the Urdd both pre-and during lockdown, producing and directing young members to self-tape parts that makeup the one minute long message, with over twenty individuals reading a separate line each.  The end result is a powerful message asking everyone in the world, particularly G20 leaders, to Stop the Clock and Start Again.

The message was translated into 57 languages and is available to view on YouTube subtitled into six different languages. We were also working on sharing the Urdd’s message far and wide, not only securing coverage in The Guardian, but also with our Celtic brothers in the Cornish Times and the Guernsey Press, helping BBC Radio Jersey report on the message being translated into Jèrriais. Responses to the message have also been coming in thick and fast from all across the world, including a lovely message of support from Catherine Zeta Jones on her Instagram. You can see the video message here.


3. What would Orwell make of a contract-tracing app?

Exposing Britain's Evils Jury Text Video from Working Word on Vimeo.


That’s the question we pitched The Times this week, earning a 500 word feature from director of The Orwell Foundation (and official historian of the BBC) Jean Seaton.  Orwell’s novel 1984 prophesised a future where Big Brother watched citizens’ every step.  If that feels a bit close to the bone right now, read Jean’s thoughts on the Times’ website here.  What Orwell would have been interested in is scrutiny and awkward truth and they’re alive in the shortlists for the Orwell Prize, announced this week for Political Writing, Political Fiction, Journalism and Exposing Britain’s Social Evils.  Check them out our announcement videos here.


4. Creating a tear-jerking video about Fostering


To mark the end of Foster Care Fortnight we produced a film for our client, Five Rivers Child Care, to help the company say a huge thank you to all its foster carers who have gone above and beyond for the children in their care during lockdown. You can watch the film here warning, tissues may be required!


5. Encouraging Wales to ‘stay in touch’

Right now, communication has never been more important. It’s something the country has embraced during the coronavirus pandemic, using everything from Whatsapp to Zoom, Skype to House Party to keep in touch. As part of Welsh Government’s ‘Looking out for each other in COVID-19’ / #HomeNotAlone campaign, we’ve been reminding people that whatever means of communication you use, staying in touch can make a big difference right now.