Mary Raftery project

Mary Raftery was an investigative journalist who uncovered the shocking abuse suffered by children in reformatory and industrial schools between the 1930s and the 1970s in Ireland. She was a well-known journalist who died prematurely in 2012.

In the same year a fund was set up in her name. Its aim is to advance ethical investigative media coverage of topics that seek to serve the public interest.

The aim of the fund is to promote more in-depth investigative coverage of issues there were close to Mary’s heart. It offers an opportunity for journalists to carry out detailed investigations into certain aspects of Irish society and to expose any injustices that might exist.

This year, its focus is on the continuing refugee issue in Europe.

“The Mary Raftery Journalism Fund (MRJF) launched the Refugee Crisis Media Fund, with the support of the Tony Ryan Trust. The fund was established to provide support to journalists and media professionals who wish to investigate the refugee crisis in Europe and the impact of the arrival and integration of refugees in Ireland.

“The Fund is open to journalists, media professionals and media organisations who wish to submit applications for print, broadcast and / or online projects. Those from regions where refugees have migrated from are particularly welcome to apply, as well as those applying on behalf of multi-media, team based collaborations. Up to €40,000 will be available for allocation and the maximum payable to any applicant will be €20,000.

“Applicants will be judged on the potential impact and reach of the proposed investigation and should demonstrate examples of their experience in this area. There must be a clear commitment to focus on highlighting the stories of those affected by the refugee crisis and the originality of the proposed idea should be evident.

“The deadline for submission of applications is 5pm on Wednesday, 31st May 2017 and applicants will be notified of the judging panel’s decisions by Tuesday, 4th July 2017.”

This is an excellent opportunity to do some truly worthwhile investigative journalism. It is also an incredible opportunity for designers, photographers, etc.

Anybody who is interested in developing a proposal should contact me at

The application guidelines are available here.