New journalism fund launched

Wed, Sep 26, 2012, 01:00

A new fund to promote investigative journalism and commemorate the work of groundbreaking journalist Mary Raftery was launched today in Dublin.

The Mary Raftery Journalism Fund, sponsored for the next 12 months by philanthropic organisation The One Foundation, will provide individual applicants with up to €18,000 to carry out investigative work in the areas of mental health, migrant issues and children’s rights.

Up to €40,000 will be available for allocation in each of three rounds of funding over the coming year beginning with mental health.

Speaking at the launch today, Ms Raftery’s husband David Waddell said her friends and family were very pleased with the set up of the fund.

“We hope that it is going to fund investigative journalism in this country along the lines of what Mary would have wished; that is professional, quality, sensitive work which challenges the institutions of the State and private institutions,” he said.

Also speaking at the launch, Mary Norris, who was interviewed by Ms Raftery for her book Suffer the Little Children and groundbreaking documentary States of Fear, said she needed someone to believe her. She said more journalists like Ms Raftery were needed to “speak the truth”.

“The truth never fails,” she said.

Applications to the fund will be assessed by a panel chaired by journalist Olivia O’Leary.

Other members of the panel are author Colm Tóibín; former editor of The Irish Times Conor Brady; Dr Mary Corcoran, Professor of Sociology at NUI Maynooth and Sheila Ahern, researcher and former colleague of Ms Raftery.

Full details of the Mary Raftery Journalism Fund are available at www.maryrafteryfund.ie

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