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Free Telephone Counseling Hotlines in South Africa


National Suicide & Crisis Lines

Online Counseling

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  • You can get affordable online counseling with a licensed therapist through BetterHelp (a sponsor). Counseling is available from your computer, phone or tablet. Financial aid is available.

Alcohol & Substance Abuse

  • Pharmadynamics Police and Trauma Line

    (0800) 20 50 26For abuse trafficking reports and drug related crimes.
  • Department of Social Development Substance Abuse Line 24hr helpline

    (0800) 12 13 14For alcohol and substance abuse rehabilitation and helpline.
  • Alcoholics Anonymous South Africa

    0861 HELPAA (435 722)Worldwide fellowship for alcoholics supporting those choosing to be sober. Only requirement for membership is a desire to stop drinking.
  • Al-Anon

    0861 ALANON (25 26 66)Al-Anon Family Groups is for the families and friends of problem drinkers, with a special section – Alateen – for children of alchoholics, and a group for adult children of alcoholics.
  • SA National Council on Alcoholism and Drug Dependence

    08611 REHAB (73422)Sanca provides specialised and affordable prevention and treatment services for alcohol and other drug dependence. A national body established in 1956, it has independently operated societies and counselling centres in all nine provinces.
  • Unhooked

    (081) 456 3945We are a Christian Based Non-Profit Substance Abuse Recovery Organisation focusing on Outpatient Treatment , Addiction Counselling , Substance abuse prevention and Intervention .We believe that recovery is possible. Not only do we offer a very good Outpatient Program , we also help families in finding the best suitable treatment option for their loved ones. We make the families part of the recovery process and offer Family Education Sessions as well as Family Support Groups.
  • Narcotics Anonymous SA

    ( 0881) 30 03 27NA is a non-profit organisation for recovering drug addicts who meet regularly to help each other stay clean.

Domestic & Sexual Violence

  • People Opposed to Woman Abuse (Powa)

    (083) 765 1235Gauteng-based organisation offering shelter and counselling services to women in abusive relationships, rape survivors, survivors of incest etc.POWA is a “feminist, women’s rights organisation that provides both services, and engages in advocacy in order to ensure the realisation of women’s rights and thereby improve women’s quality of life”.
  • Rape Crisis

    (021) 447 9762 (Observatory)(021) 633 9229 (Athlone)(021) 361 9085 (Khayalitsha)Rape Crisis Cape Town Trust works to prevent rape, offers healing to survivors, and works towards legal reforms that will ensure perpetrators are brought to justice. Services include counselling, court preparation, support groups, important contact numbers. Non-governmental organisation.
  • Stop Women Abuse

    0 (800) 150 150Crisis counselling for women who have been raped or abused, advice and support for people wanting to support women in need of help, legal and other options available for abused women and rape survivors. Run by Life Line.

Eating Disorders

  • Imani

    27 (0) 21 761 0740Imani offers a full continuum of care necessary to complete the recovery process. While the behaviours differ, the underlying feelings of desperation, powerlessness and suffering are universal.At Imani we firstly deal with the clients destructive behaviours surrounding their illness and then guide them in processing the reasons for this behaviour. We work through a therapeutic community where individuals are part of a group with similar struggles. Through mutual support and shared experience, a healing atmosphere permeates the facility even outside structured therapy sessions. 
  • Eating Disorders South Africa

    (27) 12 338 2543Eating Disorders South Africa (EDSA) hosts weekly support groups for individuals over the age of 18 who are struggling with anorexia nervosa or bulimia nervosa. These free meetings take place every Wednesday from 17:30 to 19:00 at Denmar Psychiatric Hospital.
  • Twin Rivers

    27 (0)82 863 3159Twin Rivers recognises these conditions and seeks to help those who battle with their eating habits. You may contact our 24/7 hotline for assistance.

Online Counseling

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Gay & Lesbian (GLBTQ)

  • Gender-based Violence Line

    (0800) 012 322The 24-hour hotline offers counselling for those who have been physically, emotionally, sexually or financially abused. You can also visit your nearest Lifeline centre.
  • Lifeline South Africa

    (0861)322 32224-hour crisis intervention service. “Emotional First Aid station”.
  • Gay Lesbian Support - South Africa

    0860 33 33 31SMS 079 891 3036You only pay for half the cost of the call. Send us an SMS message and a trained counselor will call you back. Monday to Friday: 4pm to 10pm & Saturday & Sunday: 10am to 10pm

Specific Disorders / Other

  • ADHD Helpline

    (0800) 55 44 33The 24-hour hotline offers counselling for those who are suffering from ADHD or would like to know more in order to help others.
  • SADAG Mental Health Line

    (011) 234 4837SADAG is Africa’s largest mental health support and advocacy group.
  • Akeso Psychiatric Response Unit 24 Hour

    0861 HELP US (4357 87)The hotline is manned by experienced counselling staff, who are trained to contain and manage the immediate crisis, provide transportation and arrange the required admission to the nearest Psychiatric Clinic, if so required.If the caller is in crisis, the intervention vehicle is dispatched, but if it is not an emergency, the caller is transferred to a registered counsellor for counselling and an appropriate referral.
  • Epilepsy South Africa

    (0860) 374 537The non-profit organisation provides education, counselling and support for those living with epilepsy and their families.
  • Diabetes South Africa

    (086) 111 3913The non-profit organisation provides health education and workshops, as well as dietary plans and support groups for people living with diabetes and their families.
  • ADHD Life Helpline

    (086) 111 3913The Life Helpline offers facilitation to clients on various matters: for example age-related & relationship problems, general information about legal, social, psychological and health problems and well-being. Our clients mobile phone users, but they do include people from the very margins of society.

Sexual Health / Pregnancy

Youth & Parenting

  • Childline South Africa

    0 (8000) 55 555Childline is an effective non-profit organization that works collectively to protect children from all forms of violence and to create a culture of children's rights in South Africa.
  • Child Welfare South Africa

    (011) 234 4837The 24-hour hotline provides information on HIV testing, treatment, care and prevention.
  • Johannesburg Child Welfare Society

    (011) 298 8500The co-ordinating body for more than 260 affiliated child welfare societies, organisations and community outreach projects. It is the largest non-profit, non-governmental organisation in South Africa in the fields of child protection and child care and family development.
  • Police Child Protection Units

    (0860) 0 10111The South African Police Service’s Family Violence, Child Protection and Sexual Offences Unit Special police units investigate violent crimes against children and offer specialised services to child victims of crime. There are units around the country.