The 2008 Emmy Award-winning documentary, Dispatches: Return to Africa’s Witch Children, shines a light on the tragic fate of thousands of children in the Niger Delta. These young people are accused of witchcraft and wizardry by their Christian pastors and then face brutal punishment, from torture to abandonment by their families.
Take two-and-a-half year old Ellin for example; she was found at the side of the road with severe burns from boiling water. Eight year old Nwanakwo had acid poured over him and later died. Stories like these of these children are heartbreaking.
Fortunately, help is available for these victims through charitable organizations such as Stepping Stones, a British based charity that helps care for 150 children who have been falsely accused of witchcraft and blamed for tragedies beyond their control. Narrated by Sophie Okonedo, this documentary provides an eye-opening look into how little humans can do when faced with superstitious beliefs and fear.
We urge viewers to watch Dispatches: Return to Africa’s Witch Children and learn more about how we can help protect vulnerable young people who are facing terrible injustices simply because they are different or cannot conform to existing norms.