Mindset

‘Witch doctors’ as therapists? Inside South Africa’s mental health crisis

Mindset travels to South Africa to see how traditional healers are providing desperately needed mental health solutions.

Across Africa, healers have been part of the social fabric for centuries.

During ceremonies, they use traditional medicine, rituals and supernatural guidance from ancestral spirits to improve people’s mental health.

Once maligned as “witch doctors”, these healers are now seen by South African psychologists as vital across a country where there is a severe shortage of trained therapists.

They say healers can help with mild depressive disorders such as anxiety and grief.

Due to accessibility and affordability, healers are increasingly popular, especially among the young.

Mindset meets three healers and examines how they can help address Africa’s mental health crisis.

Published On 25 Jan 202425 Jan 2024