Oct 02 2019 Posted: 00:00 IST

'A Tiny Spark', the 2018 Science on Screeen project has acheived further recognition after being screened at the DOCUTAH international documentary film festival.

The filmfocuses on research being led by Dr Karen Doyle, which involves analysis of removed blood clots to see what information they may yield. This is the first study of its kind in the world and is an international collaborative study between NUI Galway, hospital partners in Beaumont Hospital and throughout Europe and the Mayo Clinic, USA. These little bundles of cells could carry a wealth of information, which could point to big improvement to people’s lives. In the film we meet three incredibly brave stroke survivors who show us that it is sometimes the little things that people miss in life after a stroke, or the small victories during recovery that mean so much.

Here is Producer Caroline Kealy’s Account of DOCUTAH Festival:

A Tiny Spark was delighted to be part of the official selection for DOCUTAH this year. DOCUTAH is celebrating its 10th year as an international documentary film festival. It's a wonderful festival in the beautiful Southern Utah town of St George. I was delighted to be able to be in attendance for the festival this year with the assistance of the fantastic festival organisers Phil Tuckett and Karman Wilson. Their hospitality was amazing - I couldn’t have felt more welcome in these stunning surroundings. 

This was a beautifully curated festival and A Tiny Spark was in a strong selection of short films that focused on disabilities and peoples’ strength through adversity. A Tiny Spark was paired with Tough, the Roger Volkmann Story which was a thoughtful piece that centred around a doctor who himself had a stroke and his amazing strength of will on his road to recovery. 

There were 3 screening of A Tiny Spark over the course of the festival and the film received a fantastic response from the audiences. There were many questions about the research at the Q and As and I was approached by people afterwards who really felt emotionally impacted by the content, research and our wonderful contributors. It was great to see the reactions to the film and how it affects those who see it, thanks to Niamh Heery’s' beautiful storytelling. 

We were delighted that A Tiny Spark was the winner this year of the Short Film Humanitarian Award at DOCUTAH. The awards ceremony which took place on an outdoor stage next to the screen at their drive-through was fantastic and was certainly a great moment for us to remember. 

Thanks so much to our outstanding contributors, Rebecca Trevor and Helen. Many thanks to Karen Doyle and her team who are responsible for pioneering this ground-breaking research into stroke causing clots and the reason this film was made. Thanks to our talented crew who were integral in making this film. 

Thanks so much to CÚRAM, SFI Research Centre for Medical Devices and Galway Film Centre whose fantastic scheme ‘Science on Screen’ funded our project.



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