Faith abuse, which includes practices relating to a belief in spirit possession and witchcraft is often a hidden crime which is under-reported but can have significant impact on children. Child abuse linked to faith or belief is not confined to one faith, nationality or ethnic community.

Abuse can be separated into five different areas:

  • Abuse as a result of a child being accused of being a ‘witch’
  • Abuse as a result of a child being accused of being possessed by ‘evil spirits’
  • Ritualistic abuse which is prolonged sexual, physical and psychological abuse
  • Satanic abuse which is carried out in the name of ‘Satan’ and may have links to cults
  • Any other harmful practice linked to a belief or faith

reporting to police:

For more in depth information and how to spot the signs and symptoms of faith abuse then please follow this link: Report to Police


If you are worried or have any concerns, please contact our Yuzu Safeguarding team using the numbers below or reach out to us using the contact us button. 


  • Office Hours Number: 023 8017 0378
  • Out of Hours Number in Emergency: 999
  • Email: [email protected]
  • Safeguarding Officer: 07375 461990

other useful resources

NSPCC logo


NSPCC helps children who’ve been abused protects children at risk and finds the best ways to prevent child abuse from ever happening.

If you’re worried about a child, even if you’re unsure, contact their helpline to speak to one of their trained counsellors.


The Mix logo

The Mix

A large resource for people under the age of 25, including everything from bereavement to exam stress, emotional abuse, mental health, and homelessness. It is a private service with a 24-hour hotline.

  • Telephone: 0808 808 4994