We Only Want The Earth – how music can help us face the climate crisis

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We Only Want The Earth – can music help us face the climate crisis?

Podcasting Mentoring and Training Sessions 2024

We’re back podcasting and offering podcast mentoring, training and consultancy in 2024 after a break last year while our director Helen Shaw took time out to complete an MSc in Climate Change, Policy, Society and Media. If you’re starting a podcast, or trying to work out how you make your existing one better talk to us and book a session with Helen. Storytelling and storytelling arcs are key to good podcasting, along with sound quality and an engaging host. We’ve been making podcasts for nearly two decades and we were early innovators in podcastingi with a proven track record in audio production and award-winning audio shows. We’re working again with UCD in 2024 on their digital skills module and offering ‘The Art of Podcasting’ and ‘Storytelling Online’ for researchers. Explore our podcasts including the lovely Iceland-Ireland series Mothers Blood, Sister Songs hosted by Irish composer Linda Buckley on www.mothersbloodsistersongs.com

New Year, New Story? Begin your Dream #Podcast in 2024

New Year, new storytelling?

Are you thinking of starting a podcast, or do you need to reimagine your communications strategy? Why not talk to us?. Start with a bespoke one to one communications and podcasting consultancy clinic with Podcasting Ireland’s director Helen Shaw. Helen can help you connect your purpose and your storytelling and ensure you connect and engage with people. Let us help you shape the right podcasting strategy to reach your audience and help you find your voice as an audio host.

Eavan Boland Rest in Peace

by Eavan Boland

In the worst hour of the worst season
of the worst year of a whole people
a man set out from the workhouse with his wife.
He was walking — they were both walking — north.

She was sick with famine fever and could not keep up.
He lifted her and put her on his back.
He walked like that west and west and north.
Until at nightfall under freezing stars they arrived.

In the morning they were both found dead.
Of cold. Of hunger. Of the toxins of a whole history.
But her feet were held against his breastbone.
The last heat of his flesh was his last gift to her.

Let no love poem ever come to this threshold.
There is no place here for the inexact
praise of the easy graces and sensuality of the body.
There is only time for this merciless inventory:

Their death together in the winter of 1847.
Also what they suffered. How they lived.
And what there is between a man and woman.
And in which darkness it can best be proved.


Episode 2 of Women and Words [2008] – Eavan Boland. Eavan Boland was one of Ireland’s finest poets and she is considered to be the pioneer who facilitated women’s stories, both domestic and internal, becoming part of the Irish literary tradition. Eavan shared her journey and poetry and her life now divided between Stanford, and its literary freedom, and her family home and life here in Ireland. In this feature Eavan talked about her work and shares it, while commentators, including Professor Gerardine Meaney of UCD, assess the significance of her stature as a poet and the nature of her work.

Eavan Boland died at her home in Dublin, Ireland Monday 27/04/2020
Producer Helen Shaw, Presenter Kay Sheehy

‘Mother’s Blood, Sister Songs’ takes GOLD in the Culture and Arts category in New York Festival Radio Awards

We spent last year working on mothersbloodsistersongs.com and it was invested with love, energy and what creative wit and talent we have. So our work with Linda Buckley and all of the contributing voices has been recognised with a Gold award from the New York Festivals Radio Awards !

If you’d like to catch up on the series – the two part radio documentary and the sister podcast channel are on the site and all podcast apps.

The award is the 8th Gold for Athena Media radio and podcast productions at the international festival. In 2016 Athena Media also won the overall Grand award for its Kinder Letters history documentary. Its music documentary series Vocal Chords with Iarla Ó Lionáird won a total of 3 Golds for separate episodes and 1 silver, while its previous Gold awards started with the history series Death of an Empire (2012), the history/music series Herosongs (2015) and the Irish social history series Citizens:Lockout 1913-2013 (2014), Athena Media has also won two silvers and a bronze for other productions, as well as many finalist awards across the decade.

The New York Festival Radio Awards is judged by audio and radio production peers in the global industry, previous Gold winners are invited to become part of the international jury.

Helen Shaw, Podcasting Ireland & Athena Media’s director & producer, has been an international juror since 2013, obviously jurors can not vote on their own entries and are invited to vote on entries from across the world. Over 30 countries participate in the New York Radio Festival and this year in 2020.

New Oscar Wilde Audiobook Podcasts for Children

With COVID19 changing our world, and turning things upside down, we’ve been looking at ways in which we can help.

We know so many children are now at home and looking for stories to enjoy so we’ve released a podcast series of audio readings of Oscar Wilde’s short stories ‘The Happy Prince & Other Tales’ read by talented young Irish actors, Robert Sheehan, Brian Gleeson and Lauren Coe. Have a listen here and download the podcasts.

The readings are part of a major transmedia project we did a few years ago with the Irish composer Michael Gallen and the visual artist Felicity Clear.

You can enjoy all the stories: hear them, read them and listen to Michael’s work and see Felicity’s artwork on the website www.wildestories.ie

MOTHER’S BLOOD, SISTER SONGS new podcast series


How the genetics of Iceland reveals its Irish female roots in story and song. 

Acclaimed Irish composer Linda Buckley has a personal and professional affinity to Iceland and in this radio series she teams up with documentary maker Helen Shaw to trace the connections between the two places.

The Icelandic female line goes directly back to gaelic women, mostly taken as slaves, by Norwegian Vikings who settled the land over a thousand years ago. Buckley asks what is the legacy of that biology and what are the physical, cultural and aural traces of that relationship?

An evocative, music-led feature series exploring heritage, language, music, and gender while drawing out the little known stories of the women who mothered Iceland and the sisterhood between the two places.

mothersbloodsistersongs.com Broadcast on RTÉ Lyric FM December 29th 2019 and January 5th 2020.

Listen to the podcast series, a companion channel to the RTÉ Lyric fm documentaries with contributions from  guests including Dr Emily Lethbridge, Prof Poul Holm, visual artist Joan Perlman, folklorist Prof. Terry Gunnell, harpist and composer Katie Buckley and musician/poet Melkorka Ólafsdóttir.

Anchor  Apple Podcasts 

Spotify Google Podcasts

New Podcast Project – This is Where We Live



This is Where We Live is an audio podcast and transmedia series exploring what it takes to shape great places to live and how Dublin is facing up to its future. A story of housing and homelessness, of living and waiting, and of challenges and solutions. thisiswherewelive.ie


In the series we’ll explore the challenges facing Dublin, starting with housing and homelessness, and we’ll look outside Ireland to see how other European cities are coping, from Vienna to Glasgow, from Amsterdam to Lisbon. You’ll hear from people in the know, policy-makers and academics, and from citizens renting, buying and living in the city. And from those dreaming of a home beyond a hotel room, a bed and breakfast house, a hostel or a tent.



Along the way we’ll share our stories, our photographs and our interviews, both on and off the street, like this our first little visit to Marino, the iconic ‘garden city’ that Dublin City built in the 1920s and 30s, providing homes, and gardens, for the over-crowded inner city tenements.

If you’d like to be a part of this ongoing journey, consider becoming a supporter on Patreon.


Podcasts available on all major podcast apps including: Anchor, Soundcloud, Spotify, Apple Podcasts, Pocket Casts & Stitcher


New Episode of The Family of Things: Episode 15 – Frank Berry

Helen Shaw’s guest in this episode of The Family of Things is film-maker Frank Berry whose work tells stories of social realism in often tough suburbs from the documentary film ‘Ballymun Lullaby’ at the time of the tearing down of the Ballymun Towers to dramas like ‘I Used to Live Here’, touching on youth mental health and suicide.

Continue reading “New Episode of The Family of Things: Episode 15 – Frank Berry”

The Family of Things: Episode 14 – Tony Bates

In this episode of The Family of Things Helen Shaw’s guest is the psychologist and author Dr Tony Bates. Tony founded Jigsaw the National Agency for Youth Mental Health, after a long career in clinical psychology.  His new book ‘Breaking the Heart Open‘ has just been published and the podcast was recorded as he began writing it. 

In this episode of The Family of Things Helen Shaw’s guest is the psychologist and author Dr Tony Bates. Tony founded Headstrong, (now Jigsaw),  the National Agency for Youth Mental Health, after a long career in clinical psychology.

He was the co-editor of Vision for Change, the mental health strategic review in 2006 and that work motivated him to create an NGO with a mission to provide mental health resources for young people. Jigsaw now has 13 centres across Ireland and has become a critical part of support services for young people in Ireland.

Tony is also credited as one of the people who brought the practice of mindfulness to Ireland following his own experience at the buddhist retreat centre in Plum Village, France with the spiritual leader Thich Nhat Hanh. He is the author of Coming Through Depression, a Mindful Approach to Recovery’

Listen back  via soundcloud or  iTunes and  Anchor.