For our last profile of 2017, we chat to Nick Thomas from our AMI branch in Hamilton. Aside from making our customer’s world safer through his job, him and his wife Gina also runs Little Givers, who specialises in sustainable baby clothing with a business model of buy 1, give 1 which means that for every purchase made, they donate an item to a child in need in New Zealand or Ecuador.
Hi Nick! Can you tell us a bit about yourself and what you do?
I was seconded as Assistant Store Manager for AMI in Hamilton. It’s a leadership-based role, looking after a team of four. I’ve only been in this branch for over a month and before that, I spent three years at the Cambridge branch.
What is Little Givers and how did it start?
It started in September 2016. My wife and I were looking to start a business together and help people in need. Gina, my wife, is from Ecuador so we wanted to give back to her country as well as give back in New Zealand.
How it works is that with every outfit purchased, we donate one to a child in need either in Ecuador or New Zealand. Garments are 100% cotton tailored to New Zealand and Ecuador climates too.
The feedback so far has been super positive, and people like the concept of ‘buy 1, give 1’. Our customers get a joy out of purchasing and giving.
What’s the best part of doing Little Givers?
Definitely when we had our first giving drop earlier in the year through a charity in Auckland who help families without a place to live. There were young families getting back on their feet and we were able to help them. It’s a great feeling to actually fulfil what you set out to do.
Where to from here?
We hope to bring it to Ecuador even more next year, and as we grow, we want to be able to offer more garments in different sizes like 3 – 5. So expand our range from 0 to 5 years old. But the long, long term goals is to have clothes manufactured in Ecuador and create jobs there in a sustainable way.
You can find out more about Little Givers here.