Lochaber NHS 24 call handler nominated for national young people achiever awards

Sophie Ross, pictured, an NHS call handler from Arisaig, has been nominated for a national award. NO F52 Sophie Ross NHS24
Sophie Ross, pictured, an NHS call handler from Arisaig, has been nominated for a national award. NO F52 Sophie Ross NHS24

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Sophie Ross, from Arisaig, has been named as a nominee in the Delta Rising Star category for The Prince’s Trust and TK Maxx and Homesense Awards.

The national awards recognise the achievements of young people who have succeeded against the odds, improved their chances in life, and had a positive impact on their local community.

The Delta Rising Star award celebrates young people who have overcome barriers and are in sustainable employment.

Sophie, who grew up in Arisaig but now lives and works in Glasgow, lost her mum in 2013 which had a devastating affect on her life. Recently moving to the big city, she felt alone and began to suffer from depression. She turned to unhealthy coping methods and lost all faith in herself.

After being unemployed for six years, she began to volunteer to try and build her CV and after seeing a Prince’s Trust, Get into Healthcare course with NHS24 advertised on Facebook, she decided to apply.

Sophie told us: ‘The course came at the right time for me – my family had previously tried to push me to work but it had to be my decision. Working for NHS24 was something I never thought I could do as a job, but after the four weeks, I realised I had a passion for this career.

‘It gave me a routine back, which helped my health and mental health, and when I secured an interview at the end of the course, I knew it’s what I wanted to do, so I was ecstatic when I got the job.

‘I’ve been working as a call handler for NHS24 for over a year now and couldn’t imagine working anywhere else. I love it. It’s given me pride and a passion – something that was lost to me for years.’

The winners of The Prince’s Trust and TKMaxx and Homesense Awards will be announced in early 2021.

Speaking about the awards, Louise Greenlees, president, TJX Europe, added: ‘We’re delighted and very proud to continue to partner with The Prince’s Trust to sponsor these awards, and to recognise those young people who, with the help of the Trust, have beaten the odds to turn their lives around.  We’re humbled by their achievement and grateful for the opportunity to share in their celebration.

‘Since 2013, our partnership with the Prince’s Trust has enabled us to bring over 1,000 young people into our stores through the Get Into Retail programme, and more than  700 have gone on to find employment with us in TK Maxx and Homesense.

‘We believe that the trust helps to make a huge difference to the lives of young people across the UK, and we are privileged to be able to support them in this work.’