Innovative recycling projects in India, the effects of rapid urbanisation in Sierra Leone and South Africa, and maternal mortality rates in Guatemala are just a handful of topics that will be explored by the successful applicants to the winter 2018 round of the Simon Cumbers Media Fund.
Fourteen media professionals, working for a range of local and national media outlets, will travel to developing countries across Africa, Central America, South America, the Caribbean and the Middle East.
A total of 21 project proposals were received for the winter round of the Fund. The funding awarded to the 14 successful applicants is in excess of €44,000.
Details of the successful applicants are as follows:
- Jenny Barker has been awarded funding to travel to Haiti. She will produce a documentary photography essay depicting how communities on small islands off the south coast of Haiti are empowering themselves to become more resilient against extreme weather events. Jenny’s work will be published on Independent.ie.
- Lar Boland has been funded to travel to Tanzania and Kenya to document the impact of climate change on rural small holders in sub-Saharan Africa, and the development of alternative coping strategies to mitigate these effects. Lar will have a photo-essay published in The Irish Times. An exhibition of photos related to his project will tour Dublin City public libraries in spring/summer 2019.
- Rosita Boland and Brenda Fitzsimons have been awarded funds to travel to India, where they will explore approaches to waste management, innovate recycling initiatives and the role of new technologies among Bangalore’s waste-pickers. Their work will be published by The Irish Times.
- Susan Cahill has received funding to travel to Sierra Leone and South Africa. She will examine the impact of rapid urbanisation, contrasting the opportunities and challenges for marginalised populations, and highlighting the impact of rapid population growth on urban infrastructure and services. Susan will produce a documentary for Newstalk.
- Richard Chambers has been funded to travel to South Africa. He will report on the continuing impact of apartheid 25 years on from Nelson Mandela’s inauguration as South African President in 1994, and how community groups and Irish organisations are working to improve lives. Richard’s reports will be broadcast on Virgin Media News.
- Amanda Coakley has been awarded funding to travel to Colombia and Venezuela, where she will highlight the experiences of vulnerable Venezuelan migrants and the neighbouring countries that are struggling to support them. Amanda’s work will be published by TheJournal.ie.
- Rosanna Cooney has been funded to explore the living conditions of Venezuelans in the border state of Boa Vista, the shelters they are living in, along with the essential services provided. A series of multimedia features, including a photo-essay will be published by The Irish Times.
- Bill Corcoran has been supported to travel to Zimbabwe, where he will examine the direction in which the country’s development is going in the early stages of the post-Mugabe era, given the stiff political, social and economic challenges faced by the country. His project will be published by The Irish Times.
- Jackie Fox has received funding to travel to the Maldives. She will report on how climate change is negatively impacting some of the region’s well-known features, and how human behaviour is not only the root cause of climate change but the solution also. Her work will be broadcast by RTÉ News.
- Michael McGaughan has been awarded funding to travel to Nicaragua to look at governance, human rights and accountability in the country in light of over 400 people being killed in violence there since April 2018. Michael’s project will be published by The Irish Times.
- Ruairí McKiernan has been funded to travel to Lebanon, where he will highlight the situation of Syrian refugees through the sharing of reflection, analysis and testimonies, revealing human stories. This project will be published by the Sunday Business Post, the Irish Examiner and Northern Sound FM.
- Órla Ryan has received funding to travel to Kenya, where her project will demonstrate the prevalence of issues such as gender-based violence, female genital mutilation and gender inequality, and the vital work being done to tackle them. Órla’s work will be published by TheJournal.ie.
- Niall Sargent has been awarded funding to report from Palestine on the impact of the Trump administration’s cuts of $200 million in UNRWA funding, which supports more than five million Palestinian refugees, examining the impact on day-to-day lives, education, medical and employment projects. Niall’s project will be published by The Irish Times.
- Aisling Walsh has been funded to travel to Guatemala, where maternal mortality rates are some of the highest in Latin America. She will examine the risks facing women who cannot access essential services, and potential solutions to this crisis. Aisling’s project will be published by The Irish Times.