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Matriculants who face anxiety, depression and suicidal thoughts after receiving poor matric results have been encouraged to call trained counsellors to help them cope.
The South African Depression and Anxiety Support Groups' (Sadag) Janine Shamos said counsellors are also available for parents who may feel the pressure for their children.
"There is a lot of pressure and high expectations to perform, and pupils who don't do as well as they had hoped may feel dejected and hopeless," said senior counsellor and trainer Shamos.
"Anyone feeling anxious or desperate is encouraged to call the helpline. We are here to help," Shamos said.
"Parents are encouraged to talk to their children and take some of the pressure off. Failure need not be the end of the world, it can be an incredible learning and growth opportunity.
"Sadag believes that families and schools should talk to learners and train them to handle stress long before the matric results are released. They should have programmes running in schools that can help.
"Anyone interested in preventing possible tragedy, including schools and religious groups, should give us a call to arrange these programmes for the new year," said Shamos.
Contact Sadag counsellors on the toll-free crisis line at 0800-567- 567 from 8am to 8pm, seven days a week.