Back in 2006 Richard Branson and Sara Blakely joined forces to build South Africa’s ‘Women on the Move’ programme – a pioneering programme empowering young women to take control of their lives.

The programme, started in partnership with Canadian International Development Agency (CIDA) and Virgin Unite, worked to help women address poverty and the increasing presence of HIV/AIDS in their local communities – it included training courses relating to physical and emotional health, coaching and motivation, leadership and entrepreneurship, as well as specific modules dealing with sexuality, abuse, reproductive health, nutrition and life planning. 

Women on the Move thrived because it believed in the power of community, in the power of entrepreneurship, and in the power women and girls – three things that have remained constant in the brilliant life and career of Sara Blakely.

Since Richard and Sara’s first meeting in 2004, Sara has been one of Virgin Unite’s dearest friends and supporters – her entrepreneurial spirit and success, along with her passionate commitment to championing women and girls, have been a constant source of inspiration to people all over the world. 

Women on the Move thrived because it believed in the power of community, in the power of entrepreneurship, and in the power women and girls

To join us in celebrating 15 years of Virgin Unite, Sara has shared what it is that keeps the fire in her belly alive after working on SPANX for 20 years, the impact that she’s most proud of, and her best piece of advice for how each of us can bring some much needed wonder into the world.


Virgin Unite is committed to bringing together people and entrepreneurial ideas to create positive change for a better world  –  and in 2020 we are celebrating the incredible people who've been part of our journey so far. Join us as we continue to focus on systems change, not just symptoms, and lead through collaboration to help ignite a better future for humanity and the planet.

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