1 April 2021

Isobar Ukraine launches "We Breathe It In"

Every spring and autumn the question "How do we breathe this?" hangs in the air, along with shrouds of smoke. This is not caused by traditional September barbecues or the exhaust of an old Kamaz lorry. Seasonal weed burning poses a serious threat to both public health and the environment. "We breathe it in" emphasises the dangerous effects of burning leaves and weeds, and encourages people to compost as an environmentally conscious alternative.

Twice a year, Ukrainians are immersed in smoke. The seasonal practice of burning leaves, branches and weeds results in a real environmental disaster. fires have been known to destroy hundreds of hectares of forests, fields and even houses.

According to the Gradus survey*, 39.4% of Ukrainians still continue to burn dry vegetation. And 52% of fire-raisers are not even aware of the dangers of doing so. 
Isobar Ukraine and Amplifi Ukraine, together with the Center for Innovations Development and the UNDP, launched a large-scale information campaign. "We breathe it in" focuses on the health risks caused by the smoke, and aims to encourage communities, via television, digital and radio, to compost weeds and leaves instead of burning them.

"We are convinced that the global problem needs to be solved globally. So we researched our fire-raisers' audience and figured out how to reach them. We talk to the older generation through social videos and educational stories on their favorite TV channels of the Inter Media Group and Media Group Ukraine. We will attract middle-aged audiences via numerous digital resources (Google, Facebook), as well as a number of local leaders such as Gismeteo, Megogo, Admixer, Starlight Digital and others. As for the youth, we want to "turn them into Agents of Changes”. According to Gradus statistics, 20% of people stopped burning weeds due to the request of their children and grandchildren. "

- Julia Karpushina, CEO Amplifi Ukraine, the Project initiator



The multi-platform campaign is implemented through emotional messaging, directed at each segment of the target audience. They are mainly farmers of older generation and their children and grandchildren who are able to influence their grandparents and other relatives.


"The creative idea of the project was inspired by the statement "Grandchildren are sacred". Our grandchildren's future motivates the older generation more than their own well-being. Our team, together with the Cashmere Films Production, have created a series of videos where children are the main characters. Playing on smoky playgrounds, they persuade their grandparents not to burn leaves and weeds, but to use an alternative way — composting. Our aim is not to intimidate Ukrainians, but to give them a winning alternative. "

- Anna Zhukovskaya, CEO Isobar Ukraine
"We breathe it in" also educates people on how to compost correctly, through the creation of simple instructional leaflets, which will be distributed among about 100 active communities in Ukraine.


The campaign is supported by the project partners: Inter Media Group, Media Group Ukraine, as well as the Ministry of Environmental Protection and Natural Resources of Ukraine, the research company Gradus and local and global digital resources.  


*According to a study within the project "We breathe it in" which was conducted by the analytical company Gradus and initiated by Amplifi Ukraine and Isobar Ukraine. More than 1,200 participants of the online panel Gradus, aged 14-65 living in villages and towns, were surveyed.