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Necker Island, Sir Richard Branson and Virgin Unite: An amazing opportunity, host and mission

After returning from an inspirational trip to Necker Island, I cannot help but reflect on how incredible the trip truly was. It was an honor for the Karma Foundation, an executive philanthropic networking organization, and The Refinishing Touch to join so many other established and reputable individuals at Sir Richard Branson’s ‘Igniting Change’ Leadership Gathering. It was, without a doubt, a once in a lifetime opportunity.

Mario Insenga and The Refinishing Touch join Richard Branson on Necker IslandNecker Island is an incredible getaway of serene beauty. It’s no secret as to why Sir Richard loves his private estate so much. Nestled in the British Virgin Islands, it offers breathtaking views of crystal clear water and is surrounded by a picturesque landscape. Sir Richard is an incredibly warm person and was open and accommodating to each of us as his guests – welcoming us with open arms, being the perfect tour guide, facilitating conversation, showing genuine interest in what we each did and what inspired us – as well as ensuring we all had plenty of trips around the island. I had an unbelievable time with Sir Richard, and can honestly say he is one of the most amazing people that I have ever met.

While I was impressed with Sir Richard’s private getaway, all 74 acres of it, I came away from the Leadership Gathering even more blown away by his mission and genuine care and love for others. What he and his organization, Virgin Unite, do philanthropically is significant and affects millions of people worldwide each and every year. Mario Insenga and The Refinishing Touch attend Richard Branson and Virgin Unite's Igniting Change Leadership Gathering

Virgin Unite is all about getting the right people together with the right ideas and adding entrepreneurial magic to produce results and a better world. I’m extremely honored to be among the very few who have now had the opportunity to understand and become a part of the Virgin Unite family. The Karma Foundation and The Refinishing Touch are looking forward to a return visit, and who knows, perhaps we’ll also get involved in a space adventure.

‘Igniting Change’ and Necker Island: An update from Mario

My trip down to the British Virgin Islands was interesting and lengthy, to say the least. My exciting trip began on a Delta jet and was followed by an interesting transfer onto a twin Cessna. After I finished the trip’s flights, I was escorted onto a small private speedboat, which took me along twenty miles of beautiful ocean. We passed dozens of small islands before reaching Necker itself.

When I got to the island, I was picked up in a golf cart and brought to Temple House. This is where I was greeted by Sir Richard. He offered me a class of champagne and a big, genuine, warm “Hello”.

After a welcoming and celebratory cocktail, Sir Richard invited me to come with him to the tennis courts to watch his afternoon match. As we drove down to the courts, he asked me about my background, what I did and what sports I was most interested in.

After the match, we arrived back at the main house where I met a few more ‘Igniting Change’ guests and enjoyed some wine. A little later we drove to the lodge for dinner where the event’s entire group was finally assembled. We had the chance to introduce ourselves and network—Sir Richard began the dinner with a welcoming, easy-going address. The Refinishing Touch and Mario Insenga visit Necker Island

We had a great dinner, chatting and discussing our lives with each other. The people at the table represented all walks of life from all over the world. It was a spectacular sight, especially considering these get-togethers only happen four times a year on the island.

After an engaging, entertaining night, I retired to my lodgings: a small, beautiful house made from native teak, perched on a cliff overlooking the ocean; beside it, a pond that was home to hundreds of wild flamingos, as over 200 live on this island.

It’s impossible to describe the beauty that exists on Necker Island. As I’m sure you can imagine, it is one of the most naturally beautiful places I have ever had the privilege to experience. With a group of great people and a gracious host, ‘Igniting Change’ is sure to be an event of a lifetime.

Interested in learning more about the ‘Igniting Change’ event? Keep your eye on this space as I will be posting an event roundup upon my return. You can also visit Virgin Unite for more information.

The Refinishing Touch attends Richard Branson’s ‘Igniting Change’ Leadership Gathering

This week brings a very exciting event for The Refinishing Touch team. As we plan our 35-year celebrations of providing a valuable and necessary service to the hospitality, government, and higher education industries to ensure our environment is preserved through sustainable and environmentally-friendly practices, we are thrilled to announce that our founder and president, Mario Insenga is heading to Necker Island to attend Sir Richard Branson’s ‘Igniting Change’ Leadership Gathering from today until May 5th.

Recognized for our leadership in providing on-site furniture refinishing and environmentally-friendly asset management, The Refinishing Touch is a world leader in refinishing, remanufacturing, upholstery and armoire modification. Mario is recognized by Igniting Change for his experience as an entrepreneur, an innovator, a philanthropist and business leader, with a long-time passion for environmental sustainability.

Mario is attending ‘Igniting Change’ not only to represent The Refinishing Touch, but also to represent the Karma Foundation, an exclusive global membership organization, that Mario is a proud partner of. The Karma Foundation provides a platform for executives, entrepreneurs, and industry leaders to work together to benefit charity organizations while allowing for out-of-the-box networking and life experiences. The Refinishing Touch, Mario Insenga, attend Richard Branson's Igniting Change Leadership Gathering

‘Igniting Change’ is organized by Virgin Unite, a not for profit foundation and branch of the Virgin Group. Its goal is to bring people together for meaningful discussions and idea generation to help build a better world. Through hard work and collaboration, Virgin Unite hopes to influence: “governments, businesses and the social sector work together – driving business as a force for good.” The foundation’s main focuses are supporting global leadership initiatives and developing businesses as a force for good.

It is sure to be an event to remember. Mario is looking forward to meeting all of the other discussion participants, and to represent The Refinishing Touch and the Karma Foundation. We’re all very excited – to hear about the Leadership Gathering, hear who Mario will meet, the ideas discussed and to find out what Sir Richard Branson’s home and favorite hideaway is really like! We’ll be sharing an updates here – of you have any questions or any world-changing ideas we should raise for discussion please let us know or tweet @RefinshTouch.