Brilliant Ballybunion Logo

Brilliant Ballybunion is a exciting new Creative Climate Action project, supporting the  local community be creative, grow food and protect nature


Brilliant Ballybunion is one of 19 projects funded under the IGNITE strand of the Creative Creative Climate Action Fund II – Agents for Change. Supported by the Department of Tourism, Culture, Arts, Gaeltacht, Sport and Media in collaboration with the Department of the Environment, Climate and Communications and the Department of the Taoiseach, the Creative Ireland initiative supports creative, cultural and artistic projects that build awareness around climate change and empowers citizens to make meaningful behavioural changes.


Brilliant Ballybunion is coordinated by Grainne Toomey from Ballybunion Community Forum in partnership with The Barna Way, Lisa Fingleton (Artist), Rena Blake (Photographer/Grower), Dr Joanne O Brien (Ecologist) and Dr Clare Watson (Reflective Learning Evaluator).


According to Project Manager, Grainne, “The project will work with the community 

to grow food, protect habitats and create a vision for the future in the context of climate change & biodiversity loss. Community is very important to us. There is a great community spirit in Ballybunion.  We are really looking forward to this opportunity to work together to learn how we can best protect the plants and animals in our biosphere”.


According to Grainne, “We are so lucky to have The Barna Way, 19 acres of beautiful native meadows and woodland on the doorstep of Ballybunion and we are really excited to have the opportunity to share the magic of Barna and grow healthy food for the community”.


Lisa Fingleton, the artist with the project says she is very excited about the creative elements of the project. “I believe very much in the power of creativity and imagination. It can be quite overwhelming to think about all the impacts of climate change. It is really important for communities to create a vision of how we would like the world to be in the future and how we can do this in a way that ensures a just transition for everyone”. Lisa was the lead artist in the last round of the Creative Climate Action fund working with farmers on the Dingle Penninsula.


Lisa and Rena Blake are very committed to growing food and sharing skills with the local community at The Barna Way. Rena says, “Over the last year and a half we have also learned a lot about growing and preserving food from the Ukrainian community here in Ballybunion and we hope they will get involved in this project too”. 


The project will also run a Wild about Life programme with ecologist Dr Joanne O Brien. Ballybunion is at the mouth of the Shannon estuary which is a Special Area of Conservation, home to a large colony of bottlenose dolphins. It is one of only 10 protected sites in Europe.


There has been an amazing response to the open call for community collaborators and you can follow the journey on the website and on social media: