Wednesday, 8 January 2014

Guardian - Breaking the silence about breast ironing in Cameroon

In this article for the Guardian Global Development Professionals Network I spoke to young victims of breast ironing in Cameroon. This little-documented practice needs more attention to enable the girls affected by it, and the mothers who do it, to understand the risks it carries to women's physical and mental health.

The article sought to demonstrate the importance of empowering girls in Cameroon to speak out about harmful practices, including early child marriage and rape.

You can read the article in full on the Guardian Adolescent Girls Hub.

A small London-based charity set up by Cameroonian women is campaigning to raise awareness of the issue here and in Cameroon. The Came Women and Girls Development Organisation needs more support to continue its work.

Tuesday, 7 January 2014

Investigation: How government cuts have decimated play services

My investigation into how children's play services have been affected by central government cuts to local authority budgets, revealed nearly a third have removed some staffed and unstaffed play provision since 2010.

The findings of my freedom of information request provided the first concrete data to backup anecdotal evidence that children's play has suffered drastically under the current government.

You can read the article in full on the Children & Young People Now website (subscription only).

Play expert Tim Gill wrote this blog about the results.