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South Africa: "A medicine a doctor can't prescribe"

14 Jun 22

South Africa: "A medicine a doctor can't prescribe"

In May, severe flooding devastated communities in Durban, South Africa.

Since then, families who lost their homes have been sheltering in community halls and churches. In the aftermath, many are facing uncertainty and severe strains on their mental health.

As part of an ongoing psychological support programme, staff from Médecins Sans Frontières / Doctors Without Borders (MSF) are now using the power of music to help 'destress' shelter residents.

This video tells the story of how one MSF driver from KwaZulu-Natal – who also happens to be a skilled keyboard player – partnered with a self-taught opera singer from one of the worst-affected areas to bring positivity to people in need.

MSF and mental health

The psychological impact of a humanitarian emergency can be severe.

Our teams provide emergency medical aid in catastrophes all over the world — armed conflicts, natural disasters, famines and epidemics. However, for people who have lived through these traumatic events, survival goes beyond ensuring physical wellbeing.

Worldwide, around one in four people will suffer from a mental health problem during their lifetime, yet roughly 60 percent will not seek help.