On Saturday 13th May 2017 an intrepid group of supporters of the Wilderness Foundation will be trekking between 20k and 40k across the South Downs in memory of former mentor and volunteer Rees Ballard

It’s now more than a year since our volunteer and friend Rees Ballard died suddenly.  His loss continues to be keenly felt by all those that new him.   Thanks to Rees’ hard work, generosity, and dedication as a volunteer mentor of vulnerable and disadvantaged young people at the Wilderness Foundation, Rees has also left us a lasting and inspirational legacy, one that brings new friends and supporters to us every day.
Just recently we learned about Jackie Barnes and her friends and colleagues Carol Bebbington, Elizabeth Reeves and Sheena Clarke, all of whom will be stomping their way across the South Downs this weekend to raise vital funds in support of our work.
You can sponsor the group on their hike by making a donation via the Rees Ballard Memorial page.
Jackie and her friends learned of the impact that our work has on young lives from Rees’ mother, Christina Ballard, who has become a valued Ambassador for the charity.   Jackie tells us why she wanted to walk for wilderness this weekend.
“I am an ISTD Dance Teacher, Examiner and lecturer.  One of my mentors was Christina Ballard.  She is now a close personal friend and has been a huge influence not only on me, but also to many other dance teachers.  We all felt her loss when Rees passed away.  We couldn’t bear the feeling of helplessness that we felt, seeing Christina trying to come to terms with his death, so I, along with some others decided to do something!  We decided to enroll on the South Downs stomp on Saturday 13th May.  We are trying to raise as much money as we can for The Wilderness Foundation.
“Christina spoke movingly to the ISTD examiners after Rees’ death.   It highlighted so poignantly that.. the work that Rees did and all the volunteers do through the Wilderness Foundation is vital in reaching out to youngsters in need.”

Sponsor Jackie and Co on the South Downs Stomp

The Wilderness Foundation established a memorial fund in Rees name and thanks to the efforts of people like Jackie, Christina and many, many more we are now close to raising over £3,000 in support of our work.
If you would like to contribute to the memorial fund, so that we can have a positive impact on more young lives, please donate by visiting the dedicated page on our website: