The Dove Project – Supporting Families Affected by Witchcraft Branding
The Dove project is an 18 month pilot project is funded by Trust for London and due to be completed in March 2014. This is a partnership project between AFRUCA, London Borough of Newham and Child and Adolescent Mental Health Service. It aims to provide a holistic approach towards meeting the needs of children and families where there has been child abuse as a result of witchcraft branding.
Since February 2013, the Dove project has worked on 11 cases in the local authority area involving child abuse linked to faith or belief providing advice to practitioners, supporting families and raising awareness on witchcraft branding. A unique element of the project is the establishment of a “Team Around the Child” to help assess cases and provide support to practitioners. A group of “Community Mediators” are in place to provide support to families in re-integrating into their communities.
The project is also focused on helping local practitioners to improve their knowledge and understanding of the subject matter so they are in a stronger position to identify cases and support victims. 4 workshop sessions were held between July 2013 and November 2013 in order to provide participants with the knowledge and confidence to understand the nature and impact of witchcraft abuse and provide better support to victims of abuse linked belief in witchcraft and spirit possession. Over 50 local professionals including teachers, mental health professionals, school nursing teams community leaders and a family support agency i.e. Amber House Family support that advises families whose children are involved with or need children’s services because of welfare needs or concerns took part in the sessions.
The independent evaluation of the Dove Project by The Social Innovation Partnership (TSIP) is available to read at:
AFRUCA – February 2015