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Suicide Crisis Helpline
0800 567 567

Department of Social Development Substance Abuse Helpline
0800 12 13 14
SMS 32312

Cipla Mental Health Helpline
0800 456 789
SMS 31393

NPOwer SA Helpline
0800 515 515
SMS 43010

Healthcare Workers Care Network Helpline
0800 21 21 21
SMS 43001

UFS #Fair Kitchens Chefs Helpline
0800 006 333


Dr Reddy’s Mental Health Helpline
0800 21 22 23

Adcock Ingram Depression & Anxiety Helpline
0800 70 80 90

ADHD Helpline
0800 55 44 33

Pharma Dynamics Police & Trauma Helpline
0800 20 50 26


011 234 4837


8AM – 5PM

Cipla Mental Health
076 882 2775

Maybelline BraveTogether
087 163 2030

Ke Moja Substance Abuse
087 163 2025

Have Hope Chat Line
087 163 2050


Contact Founder: Zane@sadag.org

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SADAG has over 160 free Support Groups. To find out more about joining or starting a Support Group click here.

Mental Health Calendar 2024

2023 Mental Health Calendar

To view our Mental Health Calendar
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Do You want to check your Mental Health?

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It’s an Unequal World and Mental Health Really Matters

The international theme for World Mental Health Day (10 October 2021) is Mental Health in an Unequal World, which couldn’t be truer for South Africa. With 1 in 3 South Africans who will or do have a Mental Health issue at some point in their lifetime, and only 1 in 10 people with a mental illness accessing Mental Health – and these were pre-COVID stats. It is important that The South African Depression and Anxiety Group (SADAG) keep raising awareness about Mental Health issues in South Africa, and keep advocating for better treatment and care so that we can see the gap in treatment closing for the all those in our population who need care.

SADAG works every day to bridge the gap for people in our communities who are trying to get mental health help and care, and don’t know how to navigate the Mental Health system. “SADAG’s Helplines have received over 466 400 calls since January 2021, with 1 in every 5 calls being a Suicide related issue. We are continuing to see an increase in the number of calls to our Helplines each and every day, with 1800 – 2200 incoming calls per day. Thank goodness that there is a place like SADAG for people to reach out to and get help,” says Cassey Chambers, Operations Director at SADAG.

We know that COVID has impacted all aspects of Mental Health – those living with a Mental Health issue before COVID, as well as many more people across the globe experiencing issues because of the stressors of COVID leading to the experts around the world saying that the Mental Health impact is now the second pandemic to come out of COVID19. “The state of mental healthcare in South Africa was in crisis long before COVID19, and we need to ensure that mental health is prioritised across all sectors, provinces, and ages, to help the growing demand for Mental Health services,” says Dr Colinda Linde, Clinical Psychologist and SADAG Board Chairperson.

Some of the key issues that SADAG are wanting to raise the profile on during on World Mental Health Day, as well as through October as Mental Health Awareness Month:

The Life Esidimeni Inquest Inquiry has been postponed yet again till November 2021, with many families still no closer with answers or justice.
Urgency of the Mental Health crisis developing in KwaZulu Natal with the recent investigation into Durban Coastal Mental Health (DCMH) with serious allegations against the management and Board, but also the gross human rights violations and our biggest concern for the mental healthcare users who are vulnerable and at-risk.
There are long waiting lists at hospitals and psychiatrist facilities where patients have to wait days if not weeks until they can get a bed.
The Mental Health Policy and Strategic Framework expired in 2020 (there is still no new draft).
The National Health Budget was cut by R50,3 million over the next 3 years. With less than 4% of the Health Budget being allocated previously to Mental Health, how much more will the Mental Health budget be cut when we are desperate for an increase in investment into Mental Health.

The state of Mental Health in South Africa has been under the spotlight for many years, highlighting the lack of resources, facilities, human resources and community mental health. While so much still needs to happen to improve mental healthcare and access in the country, SADAG has spent the last 27 years helping to raise the agenda of Mental Health and provide support, information and resources to hundreds of thousands of people throughout the country. In difficult times like these, it is important to focus on what we can do together to help improve Mental Health care and access to treatment.

“Over the last 27 years, we have been able to break some of the stigma around mental illness, having more people share their own stories and experiences has helped us greatly to break the stigma around mental illness. But more needs to be done to help encourage more people to get help and let them know that it’s okay not to be okay, but that there is help and they are not alone, more activity is needed in rural areas with poverty, fewer clinics and limited Mental Health care” says SADAG Founder, Zane Wilson.

SADAG launched a Community Counselling Container in Diepsloot that has a community of over 300 000 people, and provides free Mental Health counselling and support. A new one has just been opened in Ivory Park to help the 180 000 people who need their free mental health services. We are working with Clinics, Schools, Churches, Police other NGO’s and whoever needs care and referrals.

To further build a community of mental health support, especially during COVID, SADAG has launched many additional free Support Groups over the last 18 months, many of them being online Support Groups so anyone, anywhere, can access a Support Group and feel less alone, more understood and part of a network of people who have gone through similar situations.

During October, SADAG will be coordinating the following activities:

Hosting a series of #FacebookFridayonline expert Q&A sessions covering “How to help and support a loved one with a mental illness””, “Community Mental Health”, “Menopause and Mental Health” and “Obsessive Compulsive Disorder (OCD) and Phobias”
Miss SA, Shudufhadzo Musida, #MindfulMonday sessions every Monday at 7pm tackling mental health topics with experts via Instagram LIVE “Mental Health in an Unequal World“ Webinar on Wednesday the 13th October at 10am with a panel of experts including psychiatrists, academics and traditional healers unpacking the state of Mental Health in SA. For more info, click here.
SADAG KZN are hosting their 6th Annual Mental Health Advocacy Walk with The KZN Mental Health Advocacy Group. For the 2nd year in a row, the walk will be hosted virtually, and we are asking everyone to MOVE FOR MENTAL HEALTH! Post your photos and videos to social media with caption: ”I MOVED FOR MENTAL HEALTH! LET’S MOVE TOGETHER!” Tag our social media accounts:@KZNmentalhealth @TheSADAG
The SADAG Ivory Park container has very kindly been funded by Netcare Lifestyle Trust, to reach over 200,000 people who may need help with their Depression, Anxiety, Substance Abuse, Suicide concerns and Grief. We are officially launching the Counselling Container on the 27th October, if you would like to join us please email This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.. Our staff have been visiting clinics, malls, schools and other organisations to introduce SADAG, the services we offer and present on various Mental Health topics.
SADAG’s Diepsloot Counselling Container has created an imprint in the community over the years and we were recently honoured with being ranked in the top 3 for the best service delivery in the area! SADAG will continue to bridge the gap of inequality of Mental Health services by supporting and assisting people of Diepsloot and the surrounding areas. As part of our World Mental Health Day campaign, we will increase our visibility and breakdown stigma. Email This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. to learn about how to get involved.

To keep up to date with our webinars, talks, wellness days, Support Groups, events, etc – please visit our website www.sadag.org or follow SADAG on social media (@TheSADAG) to help make #MentalHealthMatter every day.

Mental Illness does not discriminate against age, race, gender, socio-economic status or religion. “We still have a long way to go to break down the stigma and improve our mental health treatment and care in South Africa, we owe it to everyone who feels alone, or isolated, or ashamed of their mental illness. We owe it to families who are impacted and don’t know how to get help or support. And we owe it to our most vulnerable group of people who are not able to speak for themselves and deserve better care and treatment today and every day,” says Cassey Chambers (SADAG Director).

Chat online with a counsellor 7 days a week from 9am - 4pm via the Cipla Whatsapp Chat Line 076 882 2775. SMS 31393 or 32312 and a counsellor will call you back – available 7 days a week, 24 hours a day. SADAG Helplines providing free telephonic counselling, information, referrals and resources 7 days a week, 24 hours a day – call 0800 21 22 23, 0800 70 80 90 or 0800 456 789 or the Suicide Helpline 0800 567 567.

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