Witch Hunts still happen, in fact they are spreading in many parts of the world. Help us make this stop?
We're working with a network
for women and youth empowerment to stop Ghana's witch hunts before they happen, and in the process we're telling an all too rare 'good news story' out of Africa.
But this work is hard, it's challenging, and it needs
your help. We've shot many hours of amazing, shocking and enlightening video material. Now we're halfway through editing, but we've almost no money left.
Can you help us spread the word about SOSYWEN's work and this film? And help pay our costs while we finish this film for them as well and as beautifully as can be?
Life in Northern Ghana can be pretty rough, especially for women. There aren't a lot of clinics, schools, toilets taps or washing machines. Few have electricity. Religion and malaria are rife. When children die and prayers for a better life are not answered, people living on the edge blame malevolent spiritual action. Much of the media and and religious leaders stoke the fire, preaching to believers to fight evil, 'fear woman' and drive out the devil.
lacking education or levers to hold the powerful accountable, people find local scapegoats for events spinning out of control.... 'Kick the cat', writ large.
Hate crime against the old, the ill and the infertile in West Africa can be
linked to social tension when community gives way to capital old certainties fall away. Family and neighbours abuse men as
well as women, young as well as old, but most victims are 'unproductive' older women.
Thousands of disabled and destitute survivors find bare refuge under the protection of traditional authorities at six 'witch camps' scattered across Northern Ghana: Naboli, Gambaga, Ngani, Kpatinga, Kukuo and Gushiegu.
Before these camps can be closed, violence against people accused of witchcraft has to stop.
When people are educated about healthcare, gender, justice and
human rights, they are less likely to fear and make accusations of
'witchcraft'. This practical strategy works. So far, it seems to be the best witch hunt sabotage there is. So it needs scaling up. learning from best practice, and government support.
That is why we are making a documentary for Ghana TV, with Zenabu Sakibu, co-ordinator of the Southern Sector Youth and Women's Empowerment Network (SOSYWEN). Her colleagues include the Ghana Police and Health Service, the Commission on Economic Rights and Administrative Justice (CHRAJ), government Information Offices and others. They are working systematically to support independent Ghana's laws and Constitution, and educate communities reintegrate the women of the 'witch camps'. They are also pressing their government, and the international community, to take serious steps systematically to put a stop to all witchcraft related abuses.
This film will help change attitudes in Ghana and beyond.
This film will show the a problem, explore solutions, and call on all those who can and especially those with the responsibility to uphold freedom, justice and equality, to take action against witchcraft related abuse.
This film will empower Ghana TV viewers with knowledge, so that they can make the government accountable to provide facilities and normalise 'witch camps' with fresh water, health clinics and schools for the children and grandchildren of accused 'witches' who are tarred with their stigma too. This film will raise awareness and educate the nation that when you abuse a woman, you abuse a nation. And as Ghana, Black Star of Africa, shows the way once more towards the rule of universal human rights, other nations will be inspired to find their own solutions to their own problems too.
What We Need & What You Get
We need your help to pay the costs of completing the film ready for broadcast on Ghana TV.
We need to pay our editor, our sound mixer, for graphics, colour correction and grading.
We need to keep our kit up to date, and feed it with software, batteries, repair geeks and electricity.
And occasionally we need feeding too.
We need to make and copy DVDs to give to our lovely supporters, and to screen around the 'witchcamps'.
By helping us finish this film, you will help turn a tide of supernaturally inspired abuse against women in Africa and wherever else it's arising, and you will help to empower self development of impoverished communities - from the bottom up.
You also get a DVD :) and a great deal of love.
Other Ways You Can Help
Can you help us spread the word about this work? Would you Blog, Tweet, write articles, ask questions, tell the tale in your neck of the woods, find cinemas or groups, or classes that might like to screen whet we make? and when we're done, we'll provide you with the full sound and vision of a powerful DVD.
With your help as well, it's going to be very good!