Child Protection and Support Partners:
Basic Rights Counsel Initiative, Calabar
Our main partner, Basic Rights Counsel is based in Calabar, Cross Rivers State and is lead by Barrister James Ibor and his team of justice and support workers.
Safe Child Africa has been working closely with James Ibor and his team at BRCI for the last 5 years to support children who are accused of witchcraft and those who are tortured or harmed as a result.
The work that James and his team carry out on behalf of children accused of witchcraft is both painstaking and dangerous: rescuing and removing children who have been accused of witchcraft takes James and his team into the most vulnerable locations where they themselves have frequently faced threat and violence.
Once the children have been removed from immediate threat, the danger continues in providing secure housing for them, in a place where they can’t be tracked down by their persecutors.
in 2017, Safe Child Africa’s supporters funded the development of an 8 bedded Emergency Accommodation facility which provides refuge and a true life line for children who have been accused of witchcraft; children who would otherwise have nowhere else to go.
Before the Emergency Accommodation facility opened, the only alternative for these children would have been to flee to the streets where there are dangers at every turn.
Street children often fall prey to drug and sex trafficking and quickly become part of violent gangs.
The Emergency Accommodation Centre was designed to provide basic accommodation for 7 nights, while alternative secure care or longer term foster care was sought. However, James and his team have increasingly found that children require a longer stay - in some exceptional cases, this can be up to 3 months.
The problem of finding long term safe accommodation for children accused of witchcraft features in the 2018 report ‘Branded and Beaten’ produced by Marc Ellison, the BBC (you can read the full report here ) which was produced with the help of James Ibor and his team.
But while Safe Child Africa and BRCI are working to help children accused of witchcraft, they will be provided with safe accommodation, a welcome pack and toys upon arrival, emergency care and emotional support as well as hot meals and medication, for the entirety of their stay. If you would like to help Safe Child Africa meet the costs of supporting these children and others like them, please donate below:
Last updated by Safe Child Africa 2019