Posts by whrin_admin

WHRIN Launch

I am delighted and excited to announce the formal (re) launch of WHRIN today 31st December 2012. We have chosen today to launch this exciting new social enterprise in order to mark the last day of the 400th Anniversary of the hangings of the Lancashire witches in my hometown of Lancaster, UK. WHRIN hopes to work with you to ensure that such incidences no longer occur anywhere around the world in another 400 years time.

Whilst we look forward to an exciting new year ahead with all the many interesting projects that WHRIN has planned we do so remembering the countless people around the world who face a less promising 2013. Thousands of people around the world this year will suffer gross violations of their rights, and sometimes death, due to the belief that they are “witches” or “possessed”. Most victims of such abuse will be the most vulnerable members of society – women, children, elderly and the disabled.  As WHRIN’s work develops and grows over the coming years, putting an end to the injustice faced by such people will remain our driving motivation.

I am really looking forward to working with you to build a vibrant network of committed people across the world. Please do get in touch if you have any ideas for how we may be best able to do this.

Wishing each of you a very happy and healthy 2013.


Founder/Executive Director


Nepal: Jagaran Media Centre

The Jagaran Media Center (JMC)  as a non governmental organization was established in 2000 by journalists from the Dalit community in Nepal. The organization advocates to eliminate caste based discrimination, promote a more equitable, inclusive, and accountable democracy, and environmental justice and sustainable disaster risk reduction through media mobilization. The organisation has been vocal in advocating for the rights of women accused of witchcraft in Nepal.  For website please click here 

Felix Riedel: Children in African Witch-Hunts – An introduction for Scientists and Social Workers.

Children are branded as witches on a mass-scale in Congo,Nigeria and Angola. Recent interpretational frameworks about these child witch-hunts employ a simplistic materialism centred on political and economic crises. Meanwhile, historic sources from distinct regions disprove the claim of a purely modern problem. While the concept of child-witchcraft is old and equally well-known from the European context, the recent crisis points indeed at a massive shift in propaganda and victimization strategies. In this text, two showcase film-analyses further question the importance of a crisis for the ideologemes. In the meantime, journalistic evidence and experiences of social workers spearhead the research as ethnographers seem to avoid the issue. Moral demands call for an implementation of advanced theory, psychological competence and social work with children accused of witchcraft.

See full paper here

21.11.12 – Angolan Church frets over ‘chronic’ witchcraft problem

See news report here 


ECPAT UK – End Child Prostitution, Child Pornography and the Trafficking of Children for Sexual Purposes.

ECPAT UK is active in research, campaigning and lobbying government to prevent child exploitation and protect children in tourism and child victims of trafficking. For website see here 





Katherine Luongo: Witchcraft and Colonial Rule in Kenya, 1900–1955

Focusing on colonial Kenya, this book shows how conflicts between state authorities and Africans over witchcraft-related crimes provided an important space in which the meanings of justice, law and order in the empire were debated. Katherine Luongo discusses the emergence of imperial networks of knowledge about witchcraft. She then demonstrates how colonial concerns about witchcraft produced an elaborate body of jurisprudence about capital crimes. The book analyzes the legal wrangling that produced the Witchcraft Ordinances in the 1910s, the birth of an anthro-administrative complex surrounding witchcraft in the 1920s, the hotly contested Wakamba Witch Trials of the 1930s, the explosive growth of legal opinion on witch-murder in the 1940s, and the unprecedented state-sponsored cleansings of witches and Mau Mau adherents during the 1950s. A work of anthropological history, this book develops an ethnography of Kamba witchcraft or uoi. Click here for more information.

Training: Safeguarding Children: Child exploitation through the use of juju and witchcraft – ECPAT UK

ECPAT UK provides a range of learning and development events on safeguarding children from all forms of exploitation and trafficking for all practitioners who work with or make decisions about children. Find out more here


The present report details the main activities of the Special Rapporteur in 2008 and the first three months of 2009. It also examines four issues of particular importance: (a) responding to reprisals against individuals assisting the Special Rapporteur in his work; (b) upholding the prohibition against the execution of juvenile offenders; (c) the killing of witches; and (d) the use of lethal force in the process of policing public assemblies. Please click here for the full report

Ghana: Witch-hunt Victims Empowerment Project

See here for more details

Norman Miller – Encounters with Witchcraft: Field Notes from Africa

A renowned authority on East Africa examines the effects of witchcraft beliefs on African culture, politics, and family life.

Encounters with Witchcraft is a personal story of a young man’s fascination with African witchcraft discovered first in a trek across East Africa and the Congo. The story unfolds over four decades during the author’s long residence in and many trips to Kenya, Tanzania and Uganda. As a field researcher he learns from villagers what it is like to live with witches, and how witches are seen through African eyes. His teachers are healers, cult leaders, witch-hunters and self-proclaimed “witches” as well as policemen, politicians and judges.

A key figure is Mohammadi Lupanda, a frail village woman whose only child has died years before. In her dreams, however, she believes the little girl is not dead, but only lost in the fields. Mohammadi is discovered wandering at night, wailing and calling out for the child. Her neighbors are terror-stricken and she is quickly brought to a village trial and banished as a witch. The author is able to watch and listen to the proceedings and later investigate the deeper story. He discovers mysteries about Mohammadi that are only solved when he returns to the village three decades later.

Buy the book here