A campaign has been launched to help businesses and Welsh speakers in Carmarthenshire and Ceredigion.

The £300,000 initiative, dubbed ‘Bwrlwm ARFOR’, Bwrlwm meaning ‘buzz’ or ‘chat’ in Welsh, is geared towards inspiring enterprises across Wales' four most predominantly Welsh-speaking counties to leverage their linguistic skills for commercial benefits.

The campaign is a subset of the £11 million Welsh Government ARFOR Two scheme, focusing on reinforcing entrepreneurship and economic growth in the Welsh strongholds of Ynys Môn, Gwynedd, Ceredigion and Carmarthenshire.

With the overarching aim of creating opportunities for young people and families to remain in or return to their home communities, ARFOR is intrinsically linked to Wales’s long-term language strategy, Cymraeg 2050, which targets a one million Welsh speaker tally by 2050.

Fast-growing consultancy firm, Lafan, overseeing the project, is hopeful for expressive results by the end of March next year.

Lead consultant Zoe Pritchard said: "We want to create a buzz around the use of Welsh in a business or commercial environment and how it can help businesses thrive and provide careers for our young people so they don’t feel they have to move away."

Adding that adopting Welsh instead of viewing it as a "museum piece" can offer real, tangible benefits for businesses across the four counties.

Zoe emphasised the unique selling point of the Welsh language to businesses, particularly those in the tourism sector, commenting that it is more than just words but an embodiment of the nation's identity and culture.

“Our focus is also on showcasing the many businesses across the four counties which make good use of the language and to use it with confidence and pride. "

She warned that businesses lose out economically by failing to actively promote Welsh: "The fact is that not using Welsh or at least having the language on show can cost money by losing out on that Welsh audience."

ARFOR Two is financed by the Welsh Government and continues the work of the 2019 ARFOR programme, promoting economic resilience of the Welsh language in counties with the highest ratio of Welsh speakers.

Census data from 2021 shows that amongst these, Gwynedd and Anglesey reported 64 per cent and 56 per cent Welsh speakers respectively, while Ceredigion and Carmarthenshire logged 45 per cent and 40 per cent.

Numbers are gradually declining, with a 1 per cent decrease since the 2011 Census, but this is one decline the Bwrlwm ARFOR aims to counteract.

This scheme embodies the Co-operation Agreement between Welsh Government and Plaid Cymru, targeting economic support for Welsh-language strongholds, and increased daily visibility and use of the language.

It particularly focuses on supporting young people under the age of 35 to stay or return to their communities.

For more information, Lafan can be contacted at post@lafan.cymru.