South Africa: Banetsi Mphunga’s Mobile Mission – Bringing Mental Healthcare to Khayelitsha

Banetsi Mphunga tried to make therapy more accessible to the community in Khayelitsha with a mobile clinic. After running out of funds to do it, he now works full-time at the University of Cape Town, but wants to work in Khayelitsha again.

In 2018 Khayelitsha’s District Hospital told the Western Cape Provincial Parliament that Khayelitsha had a huge problem with trauma, interpersonal violence, and vehicle accidents. Another study showed that 80% of children living in the area would have experienced violence in their lives. This is what led Banetsi Mphunga, a counsellor from Khayelitsha, to offer Khayelitsha residents free counselling.

In 2015 Mphunga bought a VW Caravelle and converted it into a mobile clinic. Mphunga started off with four volunteers and three social worker interns. He got funding for a year from the South African College of Applied Psychology (SACAP) which was not extended because of differences they had in how the mobile clinic should be run. Later, he got funding from Brain Working Recursive Therapy (BWRT), which offers psychotherapy courses.

Mphunga mostly saw primary school children.

“Some parents didn’t allow the children to speak to me because of whatever was going on at home, so instead we’d do beadwork…


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Publish date : 2019-10-08 10:41:59

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