Meet the First Spark Grant Winner

Earlier this year we put out a call to donors to fund a grant to help a freelance journalist do a great, in-depth, public interest article. Eighteen generous people reached into their pockets and made it happen.

We gathered dozens of applications from freelance journalists, created a shortlist of eight, and asked the donors to choose their favourite four of those.

They chose proposals from Kay Cairns, Rachel Lavin, Kate Phelan, and Sadhbh Walsh. The donors gave each of these journalists €50 “priming” grants.

These four finalists polished up their proposals, and then the donors voted again.

And they chose Rachel Lavin‘s proposal as the one they wanted to support with this year’s €1,000 Spark Grant. We can’t tell you what her idea is, but we’re excited to see the final result. She’ll get €500 now, and €500 when it’s published (in the publication of her choice).

Lavin is a freelance digital and data Journalist. She has recently completed an MA in digital journalism from Goldsmiths, University of London, and previously worked with the Bureau of Investigative Journalism, the Sunday Independent, Irish Independent, Herald, Image Magazine, and the Roscommon Herald.

She says she “hopes to complete a special interactive digital story-telling project that analyses Dublin’s social and economic divide, and would like to express a special thanks to all the donors that made the Spark Grants possible”.

(This may not be the end of this year’s Spark Grants. We think we might have another happy announcement later this week.)

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Sam Tranum: Sam Tranum is co-founder of Dublin Inquirer. You can reach him at [email protected]

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