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Lavanya Bahuguna


This ‘Witch’ Child Was Abandoned By His Parents. Read The Rescue Story.

  • JWB Post
  •  February 25, 2016


Anja Ringgren Lovén, the founder of the African Children’s Aid Education and Development Foundation (ACAEDF), recently told the story of a small boy from Nigeria who was abandoned by his family after been tagged a ‘Witch’. The child is being cared for by Anja, and has been named ‘Hope’. He had to have a blood transfusion and is being treated for worms.

After Anja’s photograph feeding water to this little child went viral, she came forward to tell the story. She told the Huffington Post UK, “When we heard that the child was only two to three years old we did not hesitate. A child that young cannot survive a long time alone on the streets. We immediately prepared a rescue mission.”

Now, Anja wants to spread awareness about Nigeria’s superstitions that are claiming thousands of lives every year. She thinks education is the key in the fight against superstition.

She added, “I travelled alone to Nigeria where I met children who had been tortured and beaten almost to death because they were accused of being witches and therefore left alone on the street. What I saw were so barbaric and terrible and it left a deep impression on me. That’s why I decided to sell everything I owned in Denmark to devote my time and life to help ‘witch children’ in Nigeria. When children are being tortured and abused and left alone on the street, it gives a child a lot of terrible trauma they carry around inside. Being rejected by your own family must be the loneliest feeling a child can experience, and I don’t believe that anyone can imagine how that must feel like.”

With her partner, David, Anja now runs a children’s home for young people accused of witchcraft. The couple currently has 34 children living in their care. She said, “We rescue and we give love and support to the vulnerable children accused of witchcraft in Akwa Ibom. But to put an end to superstition, exorcism and black magic performed by pastors and the so-called witchdoctors advocacy work must be carried out. We work on the human nature that every child in the world has the right to food and education, and to live a dignified life. Our values consist of showing sheer compassion, care and love for those who need it the most and through that create confidence.”

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