London Charities receive £450,000 to tackle faith-based child abuse
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Posted Thursday 20 September 2007
London Charities receive £450,000 to tackle faith-based child abuse
Independent charitable funders City Parochial Foundation (CPF) and Trust for London (TfL) have awarded £450,000 to four organisations addressing faith-based child abuse linked to a belief in spirit possession.
The funding, through TfL/CPF's 'Safeguarding Children's Rights' special initiative, will support work with London's African communities that develops and strengthens community-based preventive activities in this field. The initiative was established in response to concerns raised with TfL and CPF by African community groups about the need for support at a grassroots level. Funding will support work with young people, parents, social workers, policy-makers and church leaders.
Grants have been awarded to: AFRUCA, UK Congolese Safeguarding Action Group, Churches' Child Protection Advisory Service, and the Victoria Climbié Foundation, who will work closely together through the initiative.
"These organisations have a track record of addressing this complex and difficult human rights issue, often with very limited resources", says Bharat Mehta, Chief Executive of TfL and CPF. "This new initiative will sustain and develop their work in London and enable them to contribute to the safety, quality of life and well-being of children and to promote children's rights."
CPF and TfL will support funded organisations through an advisory group involving experts from relevant fields including the Metropolitan Police and child protection/children's services. An external evaluation will be commissioned to assess the impact of the funded work.
For more information about the initiative and the grants made, please contact
Rachael Takens-Milne, Field Officer (Special Initiatives) on 020 7606 6145 or
1. Trust for London (TfL) is an independent funder established in 1986. It aims to support small, new and emerging voluntary organisations which have been established to improve the lives of people and communities in London. It believes that local people are often in the best position to identify the problems that affect their lives and the possible solutions to those problems. It works closely with its sister fund, City Parochial Foundation.
2. City Parochial foundation (CPF) is one of the largest independent charitable foundations in London. Established in 1891 it aims to enable and empower the poor of London to tackle poverty and its root causes, and to ensure that its funds reach those most in need. Each year CPF expects to make funds of about £6 million available to voluntary and community groups meeting its aims. It operates an open grants programme and also undertakes special initiatives where it wants to make a more strategic impact and, where appropriate, influence the work of others. www.cityparochial.org.uk
3. Funding was agreed as follows:
AFRUCA (Africans Unite Against Child Abuse) is one of the UK's leading charities campaigning against the abuse and exploitation of African children. With funding from CPF and TfL, AFRUCA will employ a Policy Officer to focus on addressing faith-based abuse linked to a belief in spirit possession in London. The work will include a specialist training programme for frontline staff, establishing an African Child Safeguarding Forum of African community organisations, and collaborating with local Safeguarding Children Boards to strengthen existing guidance for practitioners.
AFRUCA was awarded a grant of £123,200 over three years.
UK CONGOLESE SAFEGUARDING ACTION GROUP
Bantu Welfare Future Builder is the lead organisation for this collaborative partnership with five other organisations, which aims to promote the well-being of Congolese children. The grant from TfL and CPF will build on the partners' existing work in supporting victims and raising awareness of abuse, through the creation of a Family Centre for Lingala-speaking families in north London. Funding will support the employment of a part-time Co-ordinator who will be responsible for activities including parenting skills classes, a youth forum, one-to-one support to parents and children, and a fortnightly broadcast on Congolese community TV in the UK.
The UK Congolese Safeguarding Action Group has been awarded a grant of £107,500 over three years.
CHURCHES' CHILD PROTECTION ADVISORY SERVICE (CCPAS) www.ccpas.co.uk
CCPAS is an independent Christian charity providing professional child protection advice, support and training to churches, faith and other organisations. Funding through the Safeguarding Children's Rights Initiative will support the continuation and expansion of CCPAS's work with African places of worship in London. The work will involve identifying and establishing contact with such groups and helping them address safeguarding issues through the development of policies, good working practice, training, written information for leaders and congregations and one-to-one advice via the CCPAS helpline and individual contact. An important aspect of the work also involves helping groups to establish good working relationships with relevant statutory and voluntary agencies and also advising such agencies on issues related to faith related abuse.
CCPAS was awarded a grant of £100,000 over three years.
VICTORIA CLIMBIÉ FOUNDATION www.victoria-climbie.org.uk
The Victoria Climbié Foundation emerged from the tragic death of Victoria Climbié, the result of ritual abuse by her guardian in this country and the systematic failure of statutory bodies to prevent this abuse. Victoria's parents and the current Director set up the organisation to campaign for better child protection and effective co-ordination between statutory agencies, care services and black and minority ethnic communities. The grant from the Safeguarding Children's Rights Initiative will support work in five London boroughs to strengthen links between statutory services and African communities, including to improve identification of vulnerable children and understanding of the beliefs and practices which can lead to child abuse.
The Victoria Climbié Foundation was awarded a grant of £108,000 over three years.
4. Safeguarding Children's Rights is specifically supporting African communities in London because African community groups approached CPF and TfL for support with this issue. The evidence suggests that faith-based abuse linked to a belief in spirit possession occurs in many cultures and that cases are more likely to be identified where there is greater awareness of the issue (Stobart Report 2006).
5. Funding guidelines can be downloaded in pdf format from Safeguarding Children's Rights
6. No further grants will be made through this initiative.