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Founder and Director Andrea Mardon first visited the Cotentin Peninsula in 2007. Standing atop the cliffs at Carteret, gazing at the stunning Normandy coastline stretched out before her, she fell in love. “I knew right then that I was going to do something in France—I didn’t know what I was going to do, but I knew it had to involve this amazing place.”


Invited by the Berridge family to be a guest at their 18th-century Chateau le Mont Epinguet, which they had lovingly rescued from ruin and restored, Andrea knew she had found the perfect place. As a designer, actor, and meditation teacher, she envisioned a retreat where creativity could thrive, nurtured by the wild beauty of the region. In the summer of 2008, the first group of students and staff was welcomed to the chateau and Berridge Programs was born.


Now in its 17th year, Berridge has grown into a diverse group of artists, educators, travelers, meditators, storytellers, cooks, filmmakers, writers, and adventurers deeply connected to this beautiful region of Normandy.  


Our Mission

At Berridge Programs, our mission is to cultivate connection through creativity. We use creativity as a platform to enrich lives, foster meaningful cross-cultural relationships, and broaden global perspectives. We are committed to empowering individuals to embrace diversity, celebrate global culture, and thrive within a supportive community of fellow creatives.

Our Vision

Our vision is to promote healthy interpersonal relationships and expand awareness of self and others through creative expression and cultural exploration. By empowering young artists to connect through the universal language of creativity, we inspire them to create a more compassionate and inclusive world.


Our Values

  • We value creativity as a powerful lens for understanding, appreciating, and celebrating diverse cultures.

  • We champion the profound capacity of art to foster human connections, stimulate meaningful dialogue, and illuminate fresh perspectives.

  • We place collaboration at the center of creative practice, crafting work in the spirit of community.

  • We uphold the innate value of art, highlighting its creation and appreciation for its own sake, unrestricted by commercial considerations.

  • We build sustainable creative practices, striving to minimize our impact on crucial resources such as water, energy, plant, and animal life


Berridge Programs values and embraces the diverse backgrounds, perspectives, and experiences of our staff, participants and communities in which we live and work. We believe that diversity is not only a source of strength but also a driver of innovation and creativity. By embracing diversity, we better understand and serve the needs of our stakeholders and better create programming that reflects the richness of the world around us.

Equity is a core value, and we are dedicated to creating a fair and inclusive environment where everyone has both the opportunities and the resources needed to thrive and succeed. We examine our practices to identify and remove barriers to advancement and ensure that all employees have access to the resources, support, and opportunities they need to reach their full potential.

Inclusion is our culture, and we foster a sense of belonging for all members of our community. We believe that every individual should feel valued, respected, and included, regardless of their background, identity, or experience. We are dedicated to a culture of openness, empathy, and collaboration, where everyone feels empowered to contribute their unique perspectives and ideas.

We recognize that achieving diversity, equity, and inclusion requires ongoing effort and commitment from all levels of our organization. We are committed to continuously learning, growing, and evolving. To this end, we have created a Diversity, Equity and Inclusion Action Plan to outline our goals and commitments to an organizational culture where diversity is celebrated, equity is upheld, and inclusion is the norm.  


Read our full DEI plan HERE


Berridge Programs takes pride in providing transformative experiences for young artists but acknowledges this comes at an environmental cost. Recognizing that every human activity impacts our planet, we feel a moral obligation to reduce our carbon footprint where we can and foster climate-conscious thinking among our community. 

We understand the urgent need for international education to tackle its greenhouse gas emissions and confront its environmental role in the climate crisis. Yet, our programs offer a distinct chance to cultivate cultural dialogue and understanding regarding climate change. They serve as a platform to educate, inspire, and motivate our communities to embrace thoughtful, sustainable changes in their mindset and lifestyle.


Taking this into account, our Climate Action Plan operates on two fronts: actively reducing our carbon emissions, resource usage, and overall impact, while also educating and empowering the communities we serve to play a role in addressing the climate crisis.


Read our full Climate Action Plan HERE


Berridge Programs is committed to providing an environment where health and safety are paramount. We uphold rigorous policies, procedures, and protocols to manage risks effectively, ensuring a secure environment for all participants and staff. Participants receive comprehensive materials and safety orientations, emphasizing responsible behavior and understanding of program risks. Our organizational commitment includes robust risk management practices, staff training, vendor vetting, and proactive monitoring of global events. In emergencies, our structured response system prioritizes clear communication and swift actions. As partners in risk management, we collaborate with Cornerstone Safety Group to maintain high standards of safety and support year-round.

We invite you to read more about our policies that promote health and safety on our programs HERE

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