If you received your matric results today only to find that you did not make it, don’t kill yourself.
Those were the words of Nkululeko Khanyi, who’s the founder of Ungazibulali Depression and Suicide campaign.
He said it may be heartbreaking for pupils to find that they didn’t pass and depression could lead them into making dangerous decisions.
Nkululeko advised parents, relatives and friends of the pupils to give them support rather than pressure.
“We know you were all expecting the learner to pass but if they didn’t, you shouldn’t add pressure on them. Give them support.”
He said parents can support pupils by motivating them.
“Tell them that it’s not over and that they can still try again. Don’t fight with them by telling them they’re useless,” he said.
Nkululeko said depression affected a lot of people in the world.
He said he tried killing himself more than once but was saved.
That’s when he realised that talking about depression could really help people and that’s when he started the campaign.
He partnered with many people, including the likes of gospel giant Hlengiwe Mhlaba.
He said some of the people who are part of the campaign are survivors of depression and some have also tried to commit suicide.
Together they have gone to various places talking about depression.
People who also feel like they are suffering from it may connect with the campaign to get counselling.
Nkululeko advised matriculants, especially those who didn’t make it and feel like it’s the end of the world not to hesitate but to contact them.
“We don’t want even one life to be lost just because they failed. Failure is not an end but it’s the first attempt at learning. It gives you an opportunity to do something again and to be wiser in the second attempt,” he said.