Independent Living is a Charitable Trust. We exist to improve equity and access for disabled people, those living with an impairment and their families/whānau and support networks. We have been working with communities across Aotearoa New Zealand for over forty years. Many of our team have lived experience of disability ourselves so what we do has deep and personal meaning to us. We are committed to finding solutions to enable you to live a great life, be that navigating the health and disability sector or finding the right equipment to keep you as independent as possible.
Making Daily Living Easier
Independent Living is governed by a Board of Trustees. We are privileged to have the volunteer services of our Trustees who represent a wide talent bank giving greater community perspective and vision for the future. Independent Living benefits from their generous contribution of time, knowledge and skills.
Rick Rainey - Chairperson
Rick is a business consultant with over 30 years of business experience growing and leading high-tech NZ companies. Rick brings a sound strategic and planning focus to the Board of Trustees. Rick currently runs his own business consultancy in the areas of Governance, Strategy, and Technology, for both profit and non-profit organisations.
Rick works across Disability, Mental Health and Addictions, and private companies, and as such, brings strong connections and insights to Independent Living and the board.
Rick is also engaged as an advisory consultant to a number of other profit and non-profit boards.
Paul Brown has a blend of both commercial and for-purpose experience, working in the automotive, financial services and international development sectors. Paul has held key leadership positions, including being CEO for 16+ years of an international development agency, senior roles within multinationals, and governance positions including chairing a peak body.
Today Paul is a Strategic Advisor in his own consulting business, applying critical insights and transformative thinking to assist businesses to remain relevant, sustainable and impactful. Much of this work is at the intersection of the social sector with purpose-driven corporations.
Paul sees huge potential for Independent Living Charitable Trust’s continued success, in driving impact alongside a critical and growing segment in our community.
Kumar has a wealth of well-rounded specialist audit and consulting experience and until recently was a Partner at RSM. His clients included large global companies, privately owned enterprises, and not-for-profit organisations.
He was also a member to the New Zealand Institute of Chartered Accountant's Professional Standards Board for eight years. The Board was responsible for developing all professional and ethical standards.
He was a member of the Audit Reference Group (ARG). The ARG was established to provide feedback to the International Auditing and Assurance Standards Board (IAASB) NZ member and meets prior to each IAASB meeting to consider matters on the upcoming IAASB meeting agenda.
Kumar was awarded Fellowship by the Chartered Accountants Australia and New Zealand in 2021. Kumar is also an associate member of Chartered Institute of Management Accountants UK.
Julie is an experienced senior marketer and strategist, with a breadth of industry experience ranging from automotive and FMCG, through to retail and aged care. With leadership roles at some of New Zealand’s most iconic publicly listed companies, Julie applies a sound business lens to decision making.
Julie’s true passion though lies in customer experience, assisting businesses to put the customer at the heart of every decision or process. Today, Julie consults to companies in the healthcare and disability space, on projects ranging from the expansion of customer offerings, growing their service delivery and expanding geographic or demographic reach.
A Fellow of the Chartered Institute for Marketers, Julie is excited about the opportunities Independent Living has to help customers live better lives through providing them with the products and services to remain independent and in charge.
Grace Stratton was born with cerebral palsy, but hasn't let that hold her back. Grace has a double degree in law and communications, and is currently completing her Masters of Law.
Grace is passionate about creating opportunities for others. She helped disabled people be cast in Fashion Shows at NZFW for the first time ever in 2019, and her consultancy company All is for All employs 5 disabled people. Grace is passionate about disabled person led, positive change and is passionate about supporting our ILSNZ kaupapa.
Our entire team are trained in the various product ranges we sell, as well as attending courses relevant to mobility, disability support and assistive technology.
In addition, at each of our stores we have staff with either lived experience of disability, or specific skillsets to help you get advice tailored to your
personal circumstance – be it a specific health condition or a language barrier.
Click here to Meet the Team and see the unique skills and experience they offer.
Regardless, whatever you require assistive or mobility advice on, we have a talented team who understand assistive technology and the support groups available to assist on mobility and disability. Feel free to call us on 0800 625 100, email firstname.lastname@example.org or visit any of our stores – our advice is free and totally impartial.
Independent Living has a rich history of providing assistive products and information to people of disabilities and those who support them.
In the late 1970′s, a display of aids for daily living to assist people with disabilities was started part time at the Rehabilitation Centre in Dominion Road. The display was moved several times to the Auckland Arthritis and Rheumatism Society in Mountain Road and an Information Service was added.
The Independent Living Centre was opened in 1981 in a purpose built building on CCS grounds at Royal Oak. The building was the first of its kind in New Zealand, housing an information service, aids display, demonstration areas, function rooms and offices for community focused, tenant organizations.
This was a community collaboration between Auckland Coordinated Council for Disabled (ACCD), Auckland CCS, Arthritis and Rheumatism Society, Rotary and other organisations who joined together to raise funds and plan the development of the centre.
The Independent Living Centre went on to change its name several times in the coming years:
- 1983 Disabled Persons Independent Living Centre Inc.
- 1988 Disability Resource Centre Auckland Inc.
- 2012 Independent Living Service Inc.
- 2014 Independent Living Service Charitable Trust
- 2018 Independent Living Charitable Trust