Last summer, Anna from Derbyshire took part in our ‘360,000 Steps in September’ Facebook fundraising challenge.
In her own words, Anna says: “I wanted to give something back to Shout for all of the support they've given me so far.” Here’s Anna’s story.
What motivated you to fundraise for Shout 85258?
I've struggled with my mental health for over 10 years and was diagnosed with PTSD a few years ago, following an attack at work in 2017. My mental health since then has been bad as I've struggled to cope with the emotional and physical effects.
Since the attack I've been receiving a lot of help from my therapist, mental health team and Shout. These people and organisations have helped me through my darkest days and I cannot thank them enough. I wanted to give something back to Shout for all of the support they've given me so far.
Did you find the challenge beneficial for your own mental health?
One problem I've had since the attack is that I've been scared to go out. Doing this challenge encouraged me to go out, get some exercise and challenge the demons I was fighting. I felt so much better by being outside, getting some fresh air and having some time to myself. It gave me a sense of purpose and I felt like I was accomplishing something.
What were your highlights?
As with any fundraising goal, seeing the first sponsorship come in was a big motivator for me as I knew I had to complete what I set out to do. I think particular highlights for me were being able to get out in the countryside and to see the sun setting of an evening and feeling relaxed and having a sense of calm.
Another highlight was the day when I suddenly realised what I was actually doing (around day five) and how many miles I was walking per day. I remember thinking and saying to myself “I've got this!” That was a proud moment when I realised I had the confidence to do something, which I had not had for many years.
What would be your one piece of advice to help others make the most of their fundraising challenge for Shout?
To anyone else who is thinking about doing a challenge for Shout, I'd say go for it! The first couple of days of trying to motivate yourself is hard but, once you've done a few days, you get into a rhythm. There's a huge sense of accomplishment in doing this challenge and even if you don't complete the target, the fact that you have tried is amazing in itself.
Have you been inspired to follow in Anna's footsteps and fundraise for Shout? Find out how to get started.