Mark Thompson

Mark's Going For A Walk

Fundraising for REACT Disaster Response
raised of £63,000 target
Campaign by REACT Disaster Response (RCN 1163214)
RE:ACT is an emergency response charity that uses the skills of veterans to provide direct humanitarian action in times of crisis, in the UK and overseas.


In early 2021 I experienced a breakdown.  As the co-Founder of a leadership consultancy I failed to take my own medicine.  A year later I am still dealing with the ramifications to my business, health and family.

A large part of the reasons for my loss of capacity was existential overwhelm from global events.  Trump, Brexit, Pandemic, Climate, and now the Ukraine - each major moment, with its accompanying shrill, constant media noise, thumped down successively deeper.  What have I been doing, complacently teaching leadership in a classroom while autocrats take over and the world burns?  Are my values and beliefs so out of touch that I am living in a dream-world?

The path back to health is mostly made of self-help.  This is as true of an individual as it will be for the people of Ukraine or indeed all inhabitants of the earth as the climate warms.  The will and presence of mind to continue to believe we can be and remain at our best as we face these horrific, all-encompassing problems must be allowed space to flourish.  If we do not attempt to lead with courage and authenticity, towards the best ideals of humanity, the darker, divisive forces win out.

The world has rallied to the oppressed, invaded people of Ukraine, but as the conflict drags on focus wanes.  Nevertheless Ukraine's leaders and people have exemplified some ideals we may aspire to - authentic, resilient leadership, hope, heroic fighting, and they have mostly remained kind and helpful to one another, all borne from the unyielding instinct not to let the bullies win: we have been impressed and inspired by the kind of leadership and followership many authentic people who are not under such pressure dream of.

I want to help, but I cannot go to Ukraine.  I want to help, but I cannot, for many reasons at home, take in a Ukrainian family.  But, although my health is poor, I can walk. 

I live in Devon.  My intent is to walk the 630 miles of the South West Coast Path, the UK’s longest established path system, over the summer of 2022, to be completed by Mid-September in stages.

During May I completed a trial week to sort out feet and rucksack, completing 76 miles in 6 days, and raising just over £3500 so far.  On 10 July I start again with 554 miles to do!

I am raising money for a charity organisation called RE:ACT Disaster Response.  RE:ACT is a front-line organisation providing point-of-need support to those affected by crisis and emergency.  They are nimble, flexible, and talented.  

My healing will be to walk.  For fitness, for mental health, and I suppose for the environment too.  I want to raise £100 for every mile walked, which is a fundraising goal of £63,000.

ALL of that money will go to OP RE:ACT and I am sustaining the considerable expenses myself.

Why don't YOU go for a walk?

I also want to encourage everyone else to contribute.  If you are low, if you have experienced loss or grief or overwhelm in recent years, Go For A Walk.  Walk the dogs.  Walk the cat.  Walk the kids.  Walk your friends - it doesn’t matter who or what or even how far.  If you are in a wheelchair, go for a spin!  If you are on crutches, go for a swing!

I am still looking for sponsors to attempt to get additional funds donated or match funded.  If you know of anyone who may be interested in this please let me know or drop me a line at   Let's see how much we can raise together.

Re:ACT Disaster response

RE:ACT is an emergency response charity that uses the skills of veterans to provide direct humanitarian action in times of crisis, in the UK and overseas.Today they are working around the UK with scores of additional veteran volunteers, offering expertise in rapid disaster response, incident management, logistics and life support, collaborating with the voluntary sector and military to ensure the unmet needs of shielded communities and key workers.

I am connected to this charity through my good friend Gordon Mackenzie, who conducted Op RE:ACT's recce in-country, laying the foundation for their supply and logistics work relieving the suffering of thousands of Ukrainian refugees and residents in-country, on the front line.  I am also an ex-military officer, like Gordon. 

About the campaign

RE:ACT is an emergency response charity that uses the skills of veterans to provide direct humanitarian action in times of crisis, in the UK and overseas.

About the charity

REACT Disaster Response

Verified by JustGiving

RCN 1163214
REACT is a disaster response charity that provides direct humanitarian action, in the fastest time, to those hardest to reach and most vulnerable.

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