HISC (HOMEOPATHY IN THE SUSSEX COMMUNITY) was formed in 2011 and has established effective partnerships with organisations that support those in need. Projects include working with domestic and sexual violence charities as well as supporting people recovering from long-term and enduring mental health illness issues. They enable vulnerable and marginalised members of the Sussex community to access low cost treatment with highly experienced homeopaths.
On 22 July, HISC made the following announcement:
Homeopathy in the Sussex Community (HISC) has been awarded a grant from The National Lottery Community Fund to provide homeopathy to survivors of domestic abuse and sexual violence.
HISC works in partnership with Sussex-based organisations; RISE, and Survivors Network, offering long-term and low-cost homeopathic support to women who have experienced abuse and sexual violence.
This grant will fund these projects for the next year, allowing HISC to build on the valuable work already being done and reaching even more vulnerable women who want access to homeopathic support.
Society Fellow Caroline Jurdon and Registered members Michael Bird, Therese Eriksen, Tara Lavelle and Jo Magowan have all worked on the project with colleagues from the wider community. HISC received one of the Society of Homeopath’s Community Clinic awards in 2018.
HISC also offer volunteering and sitting in opportunities for students.
The ‘National Lottery Community Fund’ make the following points on their website:
- “Our funding is public money. This means that it cannot be used to give organisations an unlawful advantage.”
- “We fund projects that support people and communities across the UK to thrive.”
I would argue that, for the following reasons, the award is misplaced:
- Public money should not be wasted. It must be invested in projects that have a reasonable chance to do more good than harm.
- A broad consensus exists today that homeopathy has no effect beyond placebo. In fact, the NHS has stopped funding homeopathy and states that “there’s been extensive investigation of the effectiveness of homeopathy. There’s no good-quality evidence that homeopathy is effective as a treatment for any health condition.”
- Homeopathy can endanger lives. If people are misled into believing that it is effective and thus treat serious conditions with homeopathy, they needlessly prolong their suffering or, in the worst case scenario, hasten their death. Awards of the above nature can undoubtedly have this effect.
In my view, this means that the award given to HISC by the National Lottery Community Fund gives an unlawful advantage to an organisation promoting a bogus therapy. At best, it is a waste of public funds, at worst it causes serious harm.
Surely, women who have experienced abuse and sexual violence deserve better!