Meet the UoB student who is raising money for a local charity offering LGBTQ+ support

Sophie is holding a raffle and a sponsored walk/run

Sophie Harris, a UoB student in her final year studying American and Canadian studies is using her small business, which she set up in lockdown, which sells handmade jewellery and accessories, to raise funds for a Birmingham charity which offers LGBTQ+ support.

Sophie is also holding a raffle and a charity walk/run to raise money for The What? Centre in Birmingham. The initiative is running between 1 – 15 November, with the raffle on 15 November.

The What? Centre work with young people aged 9-25 to offer mental health services and they provide advice and counselling to LGBTQ+ individuals who have experienced a range of difficulties – from bereavement and bullying, to abuse and mental health issues.

Sophie and her Mum

Sophie decided to help the LGBTQ+ community after seeing intolerance aimed towards Strictly Come Dancing’s first same-sex pairing. “Following reading some unkind comments regarding the same-sex dance partners on Strictly this year my Mum and I created the foundations of an idea to raise awareness for the LGBTQ+ Community,” she told The Birmingham Tab.


“My Mum and I thought it would be a great way for people to stay active throughout lockdown whilst also helping a great cause in the process”, Sophie told The Birmingham Tab.

Sophie and her Mum are holding a raffle through her small business with 100% of the money to be donated. Other small businesses have donated prizes and there are now ten prizes worth over £95 to be won.

To take part, all you need to do is walk or run any distance wearing bright coloured clothes and send a selfie to @vintagesummercreations to be added to a large collage with all involved.

Some of Sophie’s jewellery items

Sophie is hoping her efforts will help young people gain access to support at the What? Centre which has been running for 34 years.  “The centre has a long waitlist due to high demand and I am hoping that raising awareness and fundraising for the centre means that young people can find their way to a place of support,” she told The Birmingham Tab.

You can find more about The What? Centre here

Sophie’s jewellery Instagram can be found here.

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