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Short story launched for young children in South Wales

Freshwater Interdisciplinary Research and Engagement (FIRE) Lab at Swansea University have helped launch a short-animated film for young children in South Wales and beyond.

Together with designer Joelle Evans at University of Wales Trinity St David (UWTSD), Swansea-based Welsh Folk duo DnA, and filmmaker Russ Pariseau, Jac’s River Adventure is a poetic journey along the River Tawe.

Jac – a descendant of the famous Swansea Jack – leads an adventure along the River Tawe, walking, swimming, and splashing from Swansea to the hills and back to the sea. On her journey Jac encounters hydrological, geological, and human-made features that define the River Tawe as it is today.

The short film is based on a book with the same title and is free to access. Families can also download the Jac’s River Adventure book for free from the FIRE Lab Kids website and read along as Jac makes her journey along the River Tawe.

Dr Stephanie Januchowski-Hartley, who leads FIRE Lab at Swansea University said: “This collaboration demonstrates the value of interdisciplinary programmes working together for a common goal, which in our case is to make a difference for our rivers and the communities that depend on them. We look forward to hearing from families and children about their local rivers.”

Joelle Evans, a third-year graphic design student at UWTSD Swansea, designed the artwork for the book and film. She said: “I created Jac’s River Adventure to encourage children to visit the outdoors and learn a bit about what beautiful landscapes are around us in Wales. I wanted to create something that was visually pleasing that children could not only enjoy, but learn from and have a bit of fun with.”

The adventure doesn’t end with the story – it continues with a series of activities for children to get creative, learn about, and enjoy our rivers even during the social distancing measures.

FIRE Lab invites children and families around South Wales, and beyond, to explore the website.

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