Elizabeth (47) lives in Lusaka and is among our first cohort of Peer Facilitators in Zambia. When she joined a StrongMinds therapy group in 2019, grief over the loss of her children had spiraled into depression. “I just wanted to sit all alone. My hands would feel numb. My body would be tired, but I couldn’t sleep.”
Group therapy transformed Elizabeth’s life, helping her to recover from depression. “I now feel better. My hands are okay – I am able to wash, I am able to cook, I am able to do a lot of things that I never used to do. My body feels okay. I am okay.” Her recovery inspired her to serve others who are struggling with depression.
As a Peer Facilitator, Elizabeth now leads therapy groups in her Lusaka compound. She works to create a safe space for women to open up about their struggles. “The first thing we do when we meet is come together to sing. Then we talk about confidentiality. After that, everyone feels free to share their burdens. We encourage each other through the challenges that we face on a day-to-day basis.”
The wider community now regards Elizabeth and her therapy group peers as trustworthy sources of compassion and advice. “The community is actually benefitting a lot, “she explains, “We’ve seen that, when people have challenges in their homes concerning different issues, they run to us for help.”