Their enterprise, The Independence Collective managed by IHC, is in the running for the 2020 Attitude Employee and Entrepreneur Award. This award celebrates people with disabilities who are using their initiative to face workplace challenges and shape a positive view of diversity.
The four collective members, Janie Tutton, Nathan Martin, Cameron Stichbury and Neville Pugh were all looking for real jobs and better lives, but without success. So they went into business on their own account – “four friends brewing better lives” – in collaboration with award-winning breweries.
The four are involved in all business decisions, including types of beer, recipes, partners, branding, sales and promotion. They are also involved at the sharp end, lending a hand with bottling and packaging.
Their story was told in the Unbreakable documentary series that screened on TVNZ in May this year.
In July, after two years of dreaming and planning and hard work, their Change Maker beer hit a milestone – it became available in all New World and PAK’nSAVE stores in the North Island and from distribution centres in the South Island. Their pale ale, IPA and pilsner are also available through Liquorlands nationwide and online. The collective is now looking to expand the range of beer.
The Attitude Awards are a nationally televised event celebrating the achievements and successes of New Zealanders living with disabilities.
The 2020 black-tie event will be held on 2 December in Auckland, to recognise people from the sector, including employers, employees and entrepreneurs, as well as, athletes, young people, and game-changers in the sector.
Photo caption: Neville Pugh, Nathan Martin and Cameron Stichbury take a break from bottling their latest batch of Change Maker pale ale.