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War and Displacement Take a Toll on South Sudanese Refugees

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A wider trend of a mental health crisis across vast displacement sites, where people from South Sudan who fled the trauma and violence of civil war now live in a drawn-out exile of frustration and diminishing support. As poverty and protracted violence have prevented their return, data from the UN’s refugee agency indicates that the rates of attempted and actual suicide have increased significantly here over the past three years. This is an indication of a wider mental health emergency that also manifests itself in addiction, depression and trauma-related disorders. Coronavirus brings added psychological pressures. Uganda’s ban on gatherings has suspended group therapy sessions and one-to-one counselling can only take place by phone. Restrictions impede the refugees’ ability to earn money and put children at risk of abuse as schools shut.

SOURCE: THE GUARDIAN

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