NZ stats tell us: 1 in 4 Kiwis identify as having a disability. Of that 25% of Kiwi's, the employment rate is only 24% compared with those who are non-disabled at 71%. That’s over 250,000 capable Kiwis desperately looking for employment!
The Cookie Project is a social enterprise that looks to employ Kiwis with disabilities to fill various roles within the business.
Founded in 2018 by Graeme and Eric, our purpose is to help Kiwis with disabilities see their own value in themselves and to help society see the many employment gaps our staff can fill with time and patience.
While Eric has now left the business, Graeme has carried on sparking bakers' lives with the joy of cookies!
We see ourselves as part of a unique social enterprise environment where the end goal is to give exposure to the disabled community and what those who are a part of that community have to offer.
All of our cookies are hand made using only the finest Kiwi ingredients like Lewis Road Creamery butter, Trade-Aid chocolate chips and Pic's Peanut Butter, so we know you’ll love the taste as much as the purpose behind it!
The Cookie Project Values
INCLUSION: We welcome, appreciate and respect everyone.
WORLD-CLASS: We aim to be the best in everything that we do, especially our cookies.
WHANAUNGATANGA: We create shared experiences which provide people with a sense of belonging.
Graeme and Eric were two strangers who met at a community event in 2017. Graeme shared his story with Eric and this was inspiration and heartfelt enough for the two to work together on building something for not just Graeme's family, but the disabled community they hoped to later employ.
The Cookie Project started very small - with Graeme’s adopted children who are now three amazing youths: Nga Hou aged 17, Tony aged 16, and Tyson aged 14. Ever wonder who the 3 faces in the The Cookie Project logo meant, wonder no more. Between Nga Hou, Tony and Tyson they have a range of disabilities including;
In-utero and prenatal alcohol exposure
Global learning difficulties and intellectual disability
And Here We Are
Today the business is owned and operated by Graeme with the support of his bakers, senior advisors and leadership team that he has built up around him to help the business thrive.