“People tell me they’ve been inspired by what I have done”

A dedicated Teamwork Trust supporter who stayed alcohol-free for a year has almost quadrupled her original fundraising target.

Sophie McDonald, from Corby has raised nearly £4,000 for the Northamptonshire charity – which supports adults with mental health needs, learning and physical disabilities – through her ‘Sober Sophie’ campaign.

Having set out to reach £1,000 over the 12 months, Sophie told friends and family during her recent celebratory party that she had achieved above and beyond anything she had ever expected.

“After I smashed £1,000 in the first three months, I started to think it’d be nice to get to £2,000, then £3,000, and now I am nearly at £4,000, I honestly can’t believe it,” said Sophie, who acted as a taxi for friends and family, offered home deliver takeaways to people she knew, and received kind donations from well-wishers through her emotive and honest social media posts. She also ran the London Marathon and even started selling her own music online.

“I have not only raised thousands for a charity which I have grown so connected to, I have learnt so much about myself – remembering the things I used to enjoy before alcohol became my ‘go to’. I’ve started running again, reading, song writing and recording my own music. I feel like I have woken up to the world around me, and through the wellbeing classes and counselling I have since received from Teamwork, I can’t see me ever going back to my old ways of drinking in the evenings and at weekends. I feel so sure that this is the start of a new me.”

Sophie says she has also been blown away by messages from strangers. “I’ve been very open and honest about the struggle it was to give up alcohol, particularly in the early days. I realised how drinking was negatively affecting my mental health – suddenly I was feeling my emotions and learning to deal with them, and I would share all of that via my social media. People tell me they’ve been inspired by what I have done. What a fantastic feeling it is to know I have helped others while raising money for Teamwork Trust at the same time.”

Victoria Bell, Head of Development, Teamwork Trust said: “We are so lucky that Sophie chose our charity – she has become a true friend to staff and service-users, and we are confident this won’t be the end of her support. Her commitment is exceptional and to have raised almost four times the amount she set out to do is just incredible. We thank her from the bottom of our hearts. She’s just awe-inspiring.”

Sophie’s fundraising page is still open. To donate click HERE.