Welcome to Sober in the Country, where we help our rural mates say “no thanks” or “not today” to booze.
We’re doing what they said could never be done…
… we’re saving lives by changing the narrative around booze in the bush.
We have a simple message and a bold vision: a future where every single one of our rural and remote mates – from farmers to FIFO workers – know it’s always okay to say ‘no thanks’ or ‘not today’ to booze.

We're a national charity creating radical social change and saving the lives of rural and remote Australians affected by alcohol harm through our advocacy, straight talk, lived experience, partnerships with leading Alcohol and Drug (AOD) organisations, and our online peer-support group, the Bush Tribe.


Click on the arrow of the quick links you’re interested in.

We know an honest conversation can change or save a life, so we’ve provided a way you can hear the stories of people from the bush just like you.

Watch videos of our rural mates sharing their powerful, relatable stories of hope after choosing a life with less or no booze. Here you’ll also find videos of our founder and CEO, Shanna Whan, who started it all by sharing her story – an unfiltered, inspiring tale of both struggles and success – that’s resonated with people all around Australia.
Sober in the Country is a much-needed mental health platform – a safe place to be yourself.
Whether you are curious about getting sober or already rocking your sobriety with many years onboard and being a role model to others, it's packed with useful links and information that is impossible to find all in the one place elsewhere. It's comforting to know that we are not alone and can express our struggles here without judgement. I love Sober in the Country and the Bush Tribe and am very proud to be a member of this like-minded tribe.
Anonymous Bush Tribe member
The Sober in the Country group is a safe haven for me. I feel supported in my highs and lows, held and protected.
As a young woman trying to grapple with the process of ridding alcohol out of my life completely, my journey is being driven by the inspiration of my newfound community. I feel blessed every day to be a part of this network and rural family!
Lily, Bush Tribe member
Living in the country there seems to be greater pressure to drink.
It's generally laughed at when you say you don't drink and are pressured into having one 'with the boy (or girls)', so you don't go out, you don't go to local events. The hardships of farm life and rural isolation means we really enjoy catching up at events, but the drinking culture is in your face. Sober in the Country are all rural/remote people who support each other. [The Bush Tribe] members provide advice, making us feel not so isolated, and especially help with ways to deal with the drinking culture in the bush. I would be lost without the Tribers and Sober in the Country and would have given in to that pressure.
Anonymous Bush Tribe member
I am unaware of any peer support service that has the same level of acceptance and understanding that Sober in the Country has.
You can be 1 day or 10,000 days into your voyage, and you can be abstaining completely or simply trying to reduce – but it's all done with the same kind words and support from your peers.
Terri, Bush Tribe member
I joined the Bush tribe about one week into my sober journey and found I was not alone in everything I was going through.
I only wished I’d joined earlier and had access to the resources before starting to detox. I’m now three years sober and I believe Sober in the Country and its peer support group have played a major role in changing my life.
Steve, Electrician

  • Feel free to share if you agree, and you’d like to see some tasty, healthy, alternatives to alcohol being offered at mental health days, workshops, and fundraising initiatives.

We all know harm from grog is a massive factor at play in declining health and mental health. 

So let’s be part of the desperately overdue change in this space, and do better.

It’s as simple as putting healthy alternatives on offer, alongside your beers. 

It’s as simple as just giving everyone choice.

It’s as simple as not promoting JUST alcohol on your workshop or field day or mental health fundraiser flyers.

It’s as simple as being honest within your own organisation and community.

It’s as simple as knowing that when you make the focus all about grog - you’re actually  excluding some of the very people who actually need most to BE INCLUDED.

It’s as simple as choosing to be a leader in this space ❤️

To the gathering army who are “being the change” and who are being inclusive of all our mates - whether they drink, or don’t - thank you. You cannot imagine the contributions that it’s making. We salute you all 🫡
  • ☝🏼 Ty (pictured here) is a young rural bloke who is part of our online peer support group, the Bush Tribe, and he shares a little about what it’s been like to join a group of like-minded rural people choosing less or no booze in their lives:

‘’My name is Ty. Since I was about fifteen - I struggled with grog and, sometimes, with drugs as well. 

I never realised how many other people in my industry (livestock) and in my small town felt comfortable admitting that their own drinking had become / or was a problem. 

Being a massive advocate for men’s mental health - I felt it made sense for me to make the decision to quit drinking.

Then, I stumbled across the Facebook page and website of Sober in the Country, and after that - I decided to join their Bush Tribe peer support group.

I will be forever grateful to the Bush Tribe - as I feel like I’m no longer alone in my battle with giving alcohol away and pursuing sobriety. 

At 83 days, I’m sleeping better, feeling healthier, and apparently looking healthy.

Mentally I’m doing very well.

It’s my hope that by sharing, others might be encouraged to cut back or quit, too.”


Thank you, Ty! 💪🏽🤠
Thank you for being honest and courageous enough to share your choices. Every story like yours has a massive ripple effect in the rural space, and we are so glad you’re part of our Bush Tribe mob online 😊

Keep going, brother. 
We are so proud of you. 

#bushtribe #soberinthecountry #sitc #ok2Sayno #rural #australia #health #mentalhealth #alcohol #free #choice #sober #nomorebeers
  • A gentle and warm reminder that every single person with long term sobriety had to start on day one.

Change seems so, so impossible and overwhelming when we’ve battled the demon of alcohol addiction and felt the absolutely crippling loss of hope in our lives.

Which is why a common expression in sobriety circles is “one day at a time” - because none of us in those fragile early days can fathom a week, or a month, or a year, and certainly not a decade!

But with lots of willingness, hard work, and a plan - there is a way forward - one day at a time 🙏🏻

Our website is filled with incredibly good resources and you can join almost 800 of us in the bush, online, if you could use some connection and the extraordinary gift of learning from others who’ve walked before you when it comes to being sober in the country.

That’s why our charity exists.

Have courage, dear heart, if that is you 💙

We can and we do make it out.

Please feel welcome to visit Soberinthecountry.org any time ⭐️

#ODAAT #onedayatatime #wedorecover
  • This piece of writing, shared with a generic image to protect the identity of our Bush Tribe member who wrote it, is genuinely one of the most profound and powerful pieces of writing from the perspective of a rural man who has overcome addiction. 

‘’The Longneck Kid’’ 
- submitted anonymously, with permission.

I used to wake up on a Sunday morning and think, ‘Oh my god, what did I do last night?’ - and when I stopped drinking altogether… I had a lot of thoughts that went along the lines of ‘Oh my god, what have I done?’

When I finally woke up to myself that I couldn’t drink anymore, there was a lot of damage that I had to face. A major organ ready for the bin, finances in shambles, career ruined and most tragically of all, relationships shattered to pieces. 

It was the shame of my behaviour that kept me drinking for so long. It was hard to acknowledge that people knew me as my ‘behaviour.’ 

Regardless of who I might think I was within, for others, I was something quite terrible. But I had my little drinking tribe though to tell me it was all ok and I was a great bloke. 

That’s what happens to us, isn’t it? We, problematic drinkers, surround ourselves with other problematic drinkers to such a degree that it all starts to look pretty normal.

The relationship stuff was the hardest for me.

I have no answers for anyone else I know it to be true that ‘trust arrives on a tortoise and leaves on a horse,’ and after eight years of sobriety, I’m someone people can trust again. 

I went to a doctor and got a mental health plan, I’ve seen a counsellor consistently over those eight years, and I’ve worked on my physical and mental health pretty relentlessly. 

Continued ….

(Full post on our Facebook page - unfortunately not enough space here for this masterpiece.) 🙏🏻🫶🏻