Amid mystery about the whereabouts of several migrant boats missing enroute to Spain via ‘The Atlantic Route,’ Dakar-based Sam Mednick travelled north to talk to people in fishing town Saint-Louis.

In only a few days spent there, Mednick was able to produce a strong all-format report on the hitherto unreported response of Senegalese authorities to dead bodies found on the country’s shoreline. She happened to overhear a phone call between an official and a fireman reporting that bodies that had just been found on the beach were being buried immediately in the sand by authorities, with no ceremony and apparently with no investigation, even though it’s required by Senegalese and international law.

Mednick worked hard to verify what she had heard, teaming up with Renata Brito to work on story elements. Mednick and Brito’s story was able to displace news of a coup in Niger as the top story on a leading African news portal and was picked up by clients around the world.