Norwegian extreme outdoor clothing and ski brand, Bergans of Norway, has announced an exciting partnership with the Virgin STRIVE Challenge 2016. Taking place on 1 September, Sir Richard Branson, Holly Branson, Sam Branson and Innocent drinks co-founder Richard Reed, are amongst a few named from the inspiring core team of 25 that Bergans are supporting during their ultra-endurance challenge. The team will tackle a tough 30-day expedition hiking, cycling and trail running from the base of the Matterhorn in Switzerland to the summit of Mount Etna in Sicily in aid of the Big Change charity, with up to 250 participants joining them at various stages along the way.
Big Change charity, established by Holly and Sam Branson, helps to catalyse positive change for young people and give them the essential skills needed to believe in themselves in order to drive change both in their own lives and the world around them. Bergans, with their Norwegian heritage of passion for the outdoors, are thrilled to announce their involvement in the Virgin STRIVE Challenge. ‘As a company, we genuinely believe in the power of the outdoors to inspire and educate, so we are very proud and privileged to have been involved with supporting Big Change since its inception in 2012,’ says Andy Nicolson, Bergans of Norway UK country manager.
This year, the team behind the Virgin STRIVE challenge are travelling over twice the distance (2,300km!) compared to their previous triumph back in 2014, with high hopes of raising £1.5 million for Big Change. ‘The Virgin Strive Challenge 2016 has a strong synergy with Bergans’ core values and to be associated with such a credible cause that combines a challenging expedition with raising funds to help young people in the UK is fantastic,’ said Andy.
Big Change takes pride in the dedicated relationship between the charity and Bergans of Norway. Co-founder and director of the Virgin STRIVE Challenge, Noah Devereux, said: ‘Bergans is an important part of Big Change’s history, from supplying gear used to climb Mont Blanc in 2012 to launch the charity, through to supplying the Virgin STRIVE Challenges in 2014, 15 and 16!’ Why Bergans? ‘We chose Bergans because of the quality of gear, their environmental commitments and all the work they do with supplying vital survival gear to those affected by natural disasters,’ Noah continued.
But that isn’t all the brand stands for. In fact, Bergans of Norway’s support of the Virgin Strive Challenge 2016 comes at a time when the brand is embarking on its own ambitious four-year-long journey to the metaphorical Expedition 2020. This will see the brand embark on a huge sustainability program to achieve a number of targets, such as 70 per cent of Bergans’ products to be made from more sustainable raw materials. ‘At Bergans, we have never been afraid to embark on tough expeditions,’ said Bergans of Norway’s sustainability manager, Felix Ockborn. ‘By being innovative, adaptive and focused, we will reach these goals.’