The Count Me In Collective
by Becky Whinnerah in Reading, Berkshire, United Kingdom
The Count Me In Collective aim to change the employment opportunities for adults with learning disabilities and/or neurodiversities who want to work in the brewery and pub trade in Reading and surrounding areas. They will offer training in all aspects of brewing and running a brewery. From there, they want to support trainees in finding paid employment within the sector locally through their connections in the trade. In the long term they wish to become fully self sustaining via beer sales, and therefore secure the future of the brewery and be able to employ people with disabilities.
In the UK, only 22% of autistic adults have paid employment. But if you're learning disabled, that number plummets to around 6% (sources are: National Autistic Society data on employment and Mencap learning disability employment statistics) the hope is, with this project, to make a small dent in those statistics.
The project leader has 15 years experience running her own brewery and 10 years work in education as a qualified lecturer. 2 of her children are disabled, both of whom are autistic and one with complex needs. Other members of the collective add decades of pub and brewery experience to the mix.
The collective includes both disabled and non disabled members.
This Crowdfunder would enable their team to purchase the brewing equipment they need and also pay for initial outlays such as legal costs, building works including the resin floor, merchandise and raw materials.
They have chosen to site this project in a pub for 2 reasons: The pub has offered to be an outlet for our beer and also, they have offered to do some hospitality training alongside what they're teaching, which is invaluable to anyone entering the sector.