The uniting circles of Virgin Unite
We founded Virgin Unite in 2004 to challenge unacceptable issues and systems for good by uniting people and entrepreneurial ideas.
Over the last 18 years, I‘ve been tremendously proud of what Virgin Unite has achieved - from supporting entrepreneurs to working to end the death penalty, from ocean conservation to incubating new organisations (including The Elders, The B Team, the Caribbean Climate-Smart Accelerator and so many more).
When Jean Oelwang, Founding CEO and Trustee of Virgin Unite, and I started Virgin Unite, we called on all Virgin companies to help us come up with what it would do and what we should call it. They came up with the wonderful name Virgin Unite, which has perfectly framed the organisation’s purpose and approach of never going at it alone and always listening to and learning from our partners.
The Virgin Unite logo that we’ve loved for 18 years was created by a dear friend of ours, Adrian Spooner, who sadly passed away a few years ago. Adrian was one of the best creative minds I’ve ever met. As we launch Virgin Unite’s new brand identity, I’m delighted that it’s an evolution of Adrian’s wonderful work.
What I felt in 2004 is what I still feel today – that the challenges facing the world cannot be solved by individuals, governments, or organisations alone. To get on top of problems, and seize opportunities, it is going to take everybody working together.
The world is facing unbelievable challenges right now and to overcome them we must cooperate, collaborate, and unite. What I love about Virgin Unite’s new brand identity is its ‘unity circle’ - inspired by the circles of connection and community Virgin Unite so wonderfully work with.
I’m a big believer in drawing circles around what matters most. In my autobiography, Finding My Virginity, I explain how I start by drawing a circle around myself to make sure I’m staying healthy and focused on the places I can make the most positive impact for others. The next circle includes family and friends. Then widen the circle to further incorporate your immediate communities. Make sure you get to know your neighbours well, what their issues are and try to help them. If all neighbours drew circles around themselves and their homes soon many would overlap and the elderly, the lonely, and people more generally would feel connected, loved, and cared for. The same goes for wider global communities and our environment, which is in desperate need of this attention.
The bigger the circles get, the more they start to overlap and include wider networks. Virgin Unite and our partners have been bold and drawn a circle around the Planet to ensure we truly are changing the most unacceptable systems and issues for good. We've been so fortunate to work with some great communities of leaders who have helped us to expand our impact far further than we ever could have on our own – like The Elders, The B Team, RMI, Big Change, and many others. We feel very fortunate to have many community circles of impact to all work together at the speed and scale we need to in this tumultuous time.
Thanks to all of you for being on this journey with us!