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Our Impact

The Virgin story begins in 1967 when Richard launched Student magazine, aged 15.

1960s & 70s


Richard sets up the Student Advisory Centre in 1967 to support thousands of young people with free advice on sexual health and relationships


Richard starts the Virgin Brand with the launch of Virgin Mail Order – launching companies in over 50 countries, all built to "Make People's Lives Better"




Richard supports Jane Tewson in starting Comic Relief – to combat the famine in Ethiopia and end poverty


Mates Condoms is launched as a social business by the Virgin Healthcare Foundation to help halt the AIDS crisis

Virgin supports the London Air Ambulance helicopters saving lives in the large and crowded city

A box of Mates Condoms
Mates Condoms



Virgin Atlantic flies aid into Baghdad and flies hostages out of the Iraqi capital ahead of the 1991 Gulf War


Virgin is one of the Founder Sponsors of the BRIT School – Britain's only free performing arts school


Virgin Atlantic creates Change for Children, allowing travellers to donate foreign currency as they leave their flight, raising money to support young people


Virgin Atlantic operates a relief flight into the Caribbean to help people affected by Hurricane Georges


Richard receives a knighthood for services to entrepreneurship

Richard Branson, with his parents Ted and Eve on the day he received his knighthood
Richard Branson, with his parents Ted and Eve on the day he received his knighthood | Branson family



Virgin supports Nelson Mandela's "46664" campaign to bring awareness to HIV/AIDS

Virgin Atlantic operates a relief flight into Iraq


Virgin Unite launches as the non-profit foundation of the Virgin Group, to unite people and entrepreneurial ideas to create opportunities for a better world

Launch of Virgin Unite online volunteer platform connecting Virgin Group employees to local charities

Virgin Aware is incubated by Virgin Unite to promote sustainability across the Virgin businesses

Virgin Unite, Sara Blakely and CIDA launch "Women and Men on the Move" to help combat HIV/AIDS in South Africa

Richard Branson and Sara Blakely | Ben Rose


The Eve Branson Foundation is established to support young women living in communities in the Atlas Mountains in Morocco

Pride 'N Purpose is launched to help the local communities in the Sabi Sands region of South Africa

Campaign to end obstetric fistula is launched with UNFPA, Natalie Imbruglia joins as an Ambassador

Virgin Unite partners with Virgin Active South Africa to open community gyms in the Alexandra Township

Virgin Unite and several Virgin businesses launch Heaven's Angels, raising over $1m to deliver healthcare in rural areas of Kenya

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Eve Branson Foundation

The Branson Centre of Entrepreneurship opens in Johannesburg South Africa

Connection trips to South Africa kick off with a group of UK entrepreneurs, going on to raise millions to support South African entrepreneurs


Virgin Unite and the Virgin Group launch the "0% Challenge" – aiming to reach 0% of employees across the globe dying from AIDS and supporting team members and their families living with HIV/AIDS

Bhubezi Clinic launches to tackle HIV/AIDS and deliver general healthcare in rural communities of Sabi Sands South Africa, serving over 350,000 people over the next 10 years

Richard Branson and a child at the Bhubezi health clinic

"Innovation Squads" kick off, engaging hundreds of staff across the Virgin Group, bringing them together to work with not-for-profits to help them create solutions to various challenges

Virgin Mobile USA launches RE*Generation to support homeless young people in the US


Inaugural Elders meeting is held in South Africa on the 26th May 2007

The Elders launches in Johannesburg on the 18th July 2007, Nelson Mandela's 89th birthday

Richard receives the UN Correspondents Association's "Citizen of the World Award" presented by Ban Ki-Moon

Richard Branson - Desmond Tutu - Nelson Mandela.jpg
The Elders


First Virgin Unite Leadership Gathering, since then over 2,000 people have joined the gatherings and supported the ideas of 250 incredible speakers

Richard begins advocacy for the Patients Association and other global medical groups focused on stopping the spread of MRSA

Virgin Unite and The Elders launch the "Every Human Has Rights" campaign worldwide

Virgin Mobile RE*Generation launches in Canada to support at-risk and homeless youth across the country

Virgin Mobile RE*Generation


Carbon War Room is launched to help speed and scale market driven solutions to climate change

The Rural Transport Network launches in Kenya to deliver lifesaving healthcare

Virgin Money Giving is launched by Virgin Money as a not-for-profit online donation platform

Richard Branson wearing butterfly wings leading a group of people dressed as a caterpillar on the London Marathon



Virgin Unite "Mission Possible" campaign is launched across the Virgin Group, raising over £2m for a range of youth charities

Virgin Atlantic Disaster Relief flights to Pakistan

Enterprise Zimbabwe launches to support entrepreneurship and economic empowerment

Virgin Unite works with Virgin Galactic to launch Galactic Unite focused on STEM education

Ocean Elders is launched to give a voice to the Ocean

Galactic Unite


The Branson Centre of Entrepreneurship Caribbean opens in Kingston, Jamaica through a partnership between Richard, Virgin Unite and Virgin Holidays

Richard establishes a sanctuary for endangered lemurs on Necker and Moskito

Richard and Virgin Unite team up with WildAID to call for a ban on shark fin soup and to launch a tiger conservation advocacy campaign

Richard's book Screw Business as Usual is published and a full campaign is launched to help companies embed business as a force for good

Branson Centre of Entrepreneurship Caribbean

Richard joins the Global Commission on Drug Policy which advocates for an end to the war on drugs

The Elders launch "Girls Not Brides" to end child marriage


Big Change is launched with The Big Climb – Holly and Sam Branson, along with the other founders of Big Change Charitable Trust scale the summit of Mont Blanc to raise funds for Big Change

Sundog Pictures releases Breaking the Taboo and works with Virgin Unite to support a global roadshow calling for an end to the war on drugs

Big Change


The B Team launches for a better way of doing business, after several years of support from Virgin Unite

Virgin StartUp is founded following a pilot programme in the northeast between Virgin Money, Virgin Unite, and partners

Virgin Unite, Humanity United and SPARK partner to launch an entrepreneurship initiative in Liberia

virgin startup
Virgin StartUp


Virgin Unite celebrates its 10th Birthday with "The Next Decade of Good Disruptions"

The Carbon War Room successfully merges with RMI

The inaugural STRIVE Challenge sees a group of 10 Big Changers travel from London to the Matterhorn entirely under human power

The Rural Transport Network initiative is successfully integrated into Kenya's health infrastructure through Virgin Unite's partner Christian Aid

Virgin Unite Canada partners with MaRS Discovery District to start a early-stage social impact fund – the first of its kind in Canada

Virgin Unite and partners launch a programme to support female entrepreneurs in Zimbabwe

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Ocean Unite is launched to unify and mobilise impactful voices to drive positive Ocean conservation action

The B Team launch "Net Zero by 2050" and stands alongside governments at COP21 to fight for a zero-emissions future

The Elders launch their "UN Fit for Purpose" campaign, to strengthen the UN's peace and security architecture

Virgin Unite invests in One Acre Fund, helping smallholder farmers in Sub-Saharan Africa eradicate hunger and poverty

Ocean Unite |

Virgin Unite launches its criminal justice network with a Criminal Justice Reform event where Richard joins Susan Sarandon, Bryan Stevenson and other inspirational speakers

Building on his work to abolish the death penalty, Richard calls on Governor Mary Fallin to halt the execution of Richard Glossip in a full-page ad in Oklahoma's largest newspaper

Virgin Unite helps make the UN Sustainable Development Goals famous through the Global Goals Alliance App

Virgin Unite funds a Graça Machel Trust programme supporting 268 women entrepreneurs in Malawi, Zambia and Tanzania

The B Team and Virgin Unite launch the 100% Human at Work network

Richard Branson speaking into a microphone in front of a board talking about the UN Sustainable Development Goals
UN Sustainable Development Goals | Virgin Unite


RMI, Virgin Unite and the Rockefeller Foundation launch the Sustainable Energy for Economic Development (SEED) partnership to drive renewable energy programmes in Sub-Saharan Africa

Virgin Unite collaborates with Virgin Limited Edition to launch Unite BVI, a local foundation with a mission of bringing people and resources together for the benefit of the British Virgin Islands

Together with Sundog Pictures, and a host of anti-death penalty organisations, Virgin Unite launches Death Penalty Fail

Richard joins WildAID's "nail biters" billboard campaign in Vietnam and China, speaking out against the illegal rhino horn trade

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Sundog Pictures


Ocean Unite launches "The Ocean is Everybody's Business" to engage the business community in ocean conservation

Virgin Unite works with Unite BVI, Virgin Limited Edition and Virgin in the immediate aftermath of Hurricane Irma to coordinate aid and support for communities

Virgin Unite commits to supporting The Bail Project to free over 100,000 people who can't afford bail in the Unites States

Virgin Unite contributes to Sightsavers' Trachoma work, aiming to eliminate the disease in 10 African countries

Virgin Unite contributes to a partnership between Living Goods and Last Mile Health, which will enable 50,000 digitally empowered community health workers in sub-Saharan Africa

Richard Branson stands in front of damaged buildings caused by Hurricane Irma

The Elders launch their "#WalkTogether" campaign to celebrate Nelson Mandela's centenary, convening grassroot groups working for peace, health, justice and equality

The world's largest Marine Protected Area comes into force in the Antarctic Ross Sea, thanks to the work of many organisations, including Ocean Unite

Virgin Unite supports the launch of Energise Africa, a peer-to-peer lending platform for solar energy companies in sub-Saharan Africa

The B Team, RMI and partners form the "We Are Still In" coalition of coalitions, in response to the US's intended exit from the Paris Agreement

Richard Branson joins a crowd of people on the Walk Together march


The Caribbean Climate Smart Accelerator is launched with 27 Caribbean Government heads and over 40 global organisations, to establish creating the world's first climate-smart zone

The NewNow is launched with a collective of rising global leaders tackling some of the toughest challenges for humanity and the planet

Holly Branson publishes her new book WEconomy, revealing what can be achieved when business, charity and social enterprise learn from each other

The B Team launches in Africa and Australasia

The Audacious Project launches publicly at the TED conference, revealing 7 bold projects for global change

Four people sitting in chairs, with three people standing behind them. They are all The NewNow leaders.
The NewNow


Working with Open for Business, Virgin Unite mobilises a collective of companies and individuals to launch the "Freedom to Love" campaign

NewNow leader Jaha Dukureh convenes the Africa4Girls summit to end FGM and child marriage

Richard supports Venezuela AidLive, a full-day concert to raise humanitarian funds for Venezuela

Ocean Unite launches a partnership with Virgin Voyages, pushing for protecting 30% of the Ocean by 2030

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Richard Branson at Venezuela Aid Live | Matthias Stausberg



Virgin Unite and partners facilitate the formation and on-going collaboration of the Africa Donor Collective to mobilse vaccine access in Africa

Virgin Unite and Virgin Limited Edition supports crisis-hit local communities surrounding properties in South Africa, Morocco, Kenya and the BVI throughout the COVID-19 pandemic

Virgin Unite collaborates with Virgin Orbit, Virgin Galactic, NASA and BMG to develop ventilators and oxygen helmets to be distributed to health facilities across Africa to help fight COVID-19

Virgin Unite works with Virgin Atlantic to deliver 1.4 million tonnes of medical equipment and PPE to front-line health workers battling COVID-19 in the UK, Eswatini and Mozambique

Virgin Unite supports Crisis Text Line to launch the Mental Health Fund to help individuals during the pandemic

The B Team launches Change Who to Change How campaign and publishes a CEO guide on gender balance and inclusive culture

Virgin Orbit engineers work on ventilators
Virgin Orbit


100% Human creates a conversation paper on The Future of the Workplace: The Human Experience, based on the changes due to the Pandemic

Virgin Unite facilitates The Africa Donor Collective to grow to 200+ members

The B Team, Elders, RMI, Ocean Unite and Caribbean Climate-Smart Accelerator are all critical players at COP 26, working in partnership on reforming environmentally harmful subsidies and supporting the Climate Vulnerable Forum

Virgin Unite launches "It Could Happen to You" a film series highlighting the stories of people freed from US death rows

100% Human At Work - The Future of the Workplace: The Human Experience report
100% Human at Work

Richard launches the Business Against the Death Penalty campaign, bringing together over 250 business leaders, Virgin Unite works with B Team and others to secure influential leaders for campaign

Virgin Unite partners with Ladies of Hope Ministries to launch a new fellowship to help formerly incarcerated women find professional roles at leading companies, including Virgin Orbit

Oceans Unite merges into the Ocean Risk and Resilience Action Alliance

Virgin Unite works with Fortify Rights to defend the human rights of the Rohingya community in Myanmar after the 2021 coup

Topeka Sam, founder of Ladies of Hope Ministries, with Marta who gained employment with Virgin Orbit through a LOHM programme and another woman
Ladies of Hope Ministries