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The Virgin Strive Challenge is complete

naughtone Sales Director Matt Welsh and Creative Director Kieron Bakewell took part last week in the Virgin Strive Challenge, alongside other entrepreneurs including Richard Branson.

The Virgin Strive Challenge is a purpose-driven challenge that unites an extraordinary group of people to challenge themselves by ‘Striving’ from Mount Etna to the summit of Mount Blanc, with an aim to raise money for Big Change; a charity that invests in big ideas that offer alternative ways of supporting young people. They do this by finding, incubating and connecting powerful ideas to the people and support that can make change a reality.

Last week, Matt and Kieron were part of a group of 100 Strivers that included Richard Branson, Sam Branson and Noah Devereux, who were all taking part in various stages of the challenge.

Up first was Kieron who embarked upon a gruelling five-day mountain cycle from Monaco to Tignes covering 15,000m. Kieron endured high altitudes and tough journeys, but was excited to have taken on many of the iconic Tour de France climbs.

“I’d been apprehensive about taking part in the Virgin Strive Challenge for some time but now it’s done! What an amazing group of people all raising huge amounts of money for the Big Change charity. It’s been extremely tough going but I have a huge sense of achievement from taking on many classic cycling routes and being part of such an incredible challenge.” – Kieron Bakewell, naughtone Creative Director.

The next stage was a five-day hike from Tignes to Chamonix covering 20km a day with an ascent of 1000m per day, in which Sales Director Matt took part.

Matt had to start from scratch with this challenge, needing to buy a pair of walking boots before setting off on his training in the Yorkshire Dales. Matt experienced high altitudes, 30-degree heat and plenty of blisters.

“Taking part in the Virgin Strive Challenge is one of the most challenging and eye-opening experiences of my life and I’ve got three daughters! On the second day, we’d basically climbed the equivalent of Ben Nevis, before lunch. It was hard going but there was an amazing sense of camaraderie which really helped. Putting ourselves through this extreme challenge has helped to raise a great deal of money for Big Change, which makes it all worth it.” – naughtone Sales Director Matt Welsh

The duo have raised a fantastic £15,000 for Big Change, towards the grand total of £6m raised by the Virgin Strive Challenge. The money will be invested in big ideas to help young people thrive in life, not just in their exams.

If you would still like to donate to BigChange, please click here.