Psychosocial support offered to Tropical Cyclone Freddy survivors in Malawi-Xinhua

Psychosocial support offered to Tropical Cyclone Freddy survivors in Malawi

Source: Xinhua| 2023-05-17 22:20:15|Editor: huaxia

MULANJE, Malawi, May 17 (Xinhua) -- A coalition of non-governmental organizations (NGOs) in Malawi is providing mental health interventions to people who were hit hard by the Tropical Cyclone Freddy that devastated the country's southern region in March.

The NGOs have launched a comprehensive mental wellness program in Mulanje, one of the country's border districts in the Southern Region.

The coalition of the NGOs is conducting counseling sessions, group therapy, and other interventions to help individuals recover from the emotional and psychological suffering stemming from the disaster. Activities such as traditional dances and sports are also offered to the survivors as part of the healing process.

Recent statistics show that the floods and mudslides caused by Freddy killed over 1,000 people and displaced 660,000 people.

Among the survivors is 51-year-old Margaret Nazombe, who lost her home and property, including a rice paddy that was completely washed away by the floods. The woman and her six children sought refuge at one of the evacuation camps in the district.

"The loss continues to haunt me," she said. "My rice field was my family's source of sustenance, and now that everything is gone, I have been mentally affected."

According to Nazombe, the mental health program has helped her fight frustration, anger and denial, and she has since shifted her focus from the past to what lies ahead.

Malawian President Lazarus Chakwera described the aftermath of the cyclone as "one of the darkest hours in the history of Malawi."