Sadag fielding more calls from distressed South Africans amid violence

Sadag said counse;lors had been receiving more calls over the last few days from South Africans, desperate about where to stay, how they're going to feed their families, and how to stay safe.

People waiting outside of a store for their chance to take what they can after the store was looted during what was considered #FreeZuma protests in Hillbrow on 11 July 2021. Picture: Boikhutso Ntsoko/ Eyewitness News.

JOHANNESBURG - The South African Depression and Anxiety Group (Sadag) has received an increase in calls from distressed people seeking help amid the violence gripping parts of the country.

Government wants 25,000 more soldiers to be deployed to Gauteng and Kwazulu-Natal to quell the violence ravaging the two provinces, leaving a trail of destruction.

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Malls, businesses, warehouses and factories have been ransacked and vandalised.

The cost of all this damage is yet to be determined but is said to be in the billions.

As a result, many jobs are now on the line.

“So many people are feeling overwhelmed by everything that's going on, you know feeling really scared and fearful. Very anxious but also just really scared as to what to what's going to happen next,” said Sadag director Cassey Chambers on Thursday.

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She also said counsellors had been receiving more calls over the last few days from South Africans, desperate about where to stay, how they're going to feed their families, and how to stay safe.

“So, our counsellors are really trying to help and offer as much support and comfort during this time, but also putting action plans to get people their basic needs. Somewhere safe to stay, something to eat, something to keep them warm. There is so much happening at the moment that they're feeling like they're getting it from all sides,” she said.

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Due to the mass looting, several malls and grocery stores have been ransacked while ATMs have also been vandalised, leaving many concerned about how they will buy food.

In some instances, people have started panic-buying following warnings that fuel might be scant in the next few days, and food outlets won't be able to restock immediately.

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