Research and Projects Click here for PMB

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The Child and Family Centre (CFC) at the University of KwaZulu-Natal offers a variety of psychological services in the Pietermaritzburg area as well as the wider community. Counselling is offered to individuals of all ages, couples, families and groups. All services are highly professional and strictly confidential. The CFC maintains close associations and consultation with referring agencies and other mental health services.

The CFC is accredited by the Health Professions Council (HPCSA) as an advanced training site for intern psychologists within the Discipline of Psychology, dedicated to maintaining the highest standards of training and supervision for intern psychologists. The CFC offers professional services in the following areas:

Personal counselling and psychotherapy (for children, adults and families) focuses on areas such as:

  • Relationship difficulties
  • Stress and burnout
  • Work related concerns
  • Anxiety and depression
  • Bereavement
  • HIV/AIDS counselling
  • Marriage counselling
  • Trauma counselling

Psychological assessment (for children and adults) for domains such as:

  • School readiness assessment
  • Assessments for ADHD and learning difficulties
  • Cognitive assessment
  • Neuropsychological assessment
  • Personality assessment

Career assessment and counselling:

  • Grade 9 learners are assisted with subject choices
  • Grade 10 to 12 learners are assisted with career choices and career related decisions
  • For adolescents and adults, career assessments are used to provide greater clarity about an individual’s potential, interest, values, and personality
  • Computerized career assessments are available

Other services include:

  • Training, supervision and mentoring of educators, social workers, community mental health workers, community volunteers, and related mental health professional on request
  • Development and facilitation of community based interventions.

The CFC is open Monday through Friday from 8:00 a.m. to 4:00 p.m. Services are offered at a low cost to the community in Pietermaritzburg. Specific fee information for assessment and therapy services may be obtained by contacting the CFC telephonically and via email.



CFC Director: Dr Phindile L. Mayaba
Discipline of Psychology
School of Applied Human Sciences
University of KwaZulu-Natal, Pietermaritzburg Campus
Email address:   

CFC Administrator: Mr Zamani Zwane
Discipline of Psychology
School of Applied Human Sciences
University of KwaZulu-Natal, Pietermaritzburg Campus
Physical address:        20 Golf Road, Scottsville 3209
Telephone number:     033 260 5166
Email address:   


The HIV/AIDS Vaccines Ethics Group (HAVEG)

The HIV AIDS Vaccines Ethics Group (HAVEG) comprises of a multi-disciplinary team of core staff and consultants with backgrounds in the behavioural sciences, law and human rights, and research ethics. HAVEG undertakes empirical and conceptual research into ethico-legal complexities in HIV vaccine trials in South Africa, and is involved in the development of resources for vaccine stakeholders. We work with a range of role-players to facilitate the ethical conduct of HIV vaccine trials in our setting.  HAVEG has focused on key issues in such trials including informed consent for trial participation, ancillary care and standards of prevention, and adolescent participation.

Further details about HAVEG


Masculinity Research Group

This project is broadly concerned with understanding the psychology of masculinity, and especially some of the critical issues such as masculinity and HIV.

Further details about
Masculinity Research Group


The Pietermaritzburg Suicidology Project (PSP)

The Pietermaritzburg Suicidology Project (PSP) was established in 1983 in the context of a general hospital clinical psychology service. In developing a clinical psychology service at Northdale general Hospital, Pietermaritzburg, we found ourselves inundated with referrals from physicians concerning cases of suicidal behaviour, particularly in adolescents. In most cases these involved overdoses of medication or ingestion of poisonous substances. In view of the high incidence of the problem and complex psychosocial dynamics involved, we developed a treatment strategy that we in turn subjected to research evaluation. Our research has also developed to exploration of other facets of suicidal behaviour, including psychodynamics, family dynamics, gender, HIV/AIDS, culture, and prevention strategies.

Further details about Pietermaritzburg Suicidology Project


SARETI The South African Research Ethics Training Initiative

SARETI is a comprehensive multi-disciplinary education programme in health research ethics for Africa. SARETI aims to build African capacity for the ethical review of health research, and to strengthen Africa’s institutional training capacity to achieve and sustain this.
SARETI provides a variety of educational programmes, varying from short workshops and short courses to full Masters programmes.
The partners in SARETI are the University of KwaZulu-Natal (School of Psychology) the University of Pretoria (School of Medicine), and the Johns Hopkins University, Berman Institute of Bioethics.

Further details about SARETI


The Ethics, Law, and Human Rights Collaborating Centre of the

African AIDS Vaccine Programme

AAVP African AIDS Vaccine Programme

Situated in the University of KwaZulu-Natal’s School of Psychology, Pietermaritzburg, South Africa, the Ethics, Law, and Human Rights (ELH) Collaborating Centre of the AAVP works to facilitate the ethical conduct of HIV vaccine trials in selected African countries proximal to running trials.

The Primary Objectives of ELH are to:

  • Assess and strengthen the ethical-legal framework in African countries;
  • Facilitate networking and consensus-building among major stakeholders; and
  • Conceptually address and develop resources on key ethical issues in HIV vaccine trials.

AAVP ELH has been funded from 2002. For the current funding cycle which runs until 2009, the ELH Chair is Prof Douglas Wassenaar, the Coordinator is Mrs Nicole Mamotte, and ELH Executive members are Ms Cathy Slack (HAVEG) and Ms Ann Strode (Faculty of Law, UKZN). International advisory members include Dr Pamela Andanda (Kenya), Prof Clement Ademabowo (Nigeria), Prof Coumba Toure Kane (Senegal), Dr Aceme Nyika (Tanzania), Ms Kitty Grant (South Africa) and Dr Henrietta Consolo (United Kingdom).

Contact Details:
Tel: +27 33 260 6165
Fax: +27 33 260 6065
Further details about ELH

Mapping African Research Ethics Capacity: MARC

with a URL link to:

Contact details:
Discipline of Psychology

Ms Sharon Hattingh
Pietermaritzburg Campus 
University of KwaZulu-Natal
Telephone: +27(0)33 260 5369

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