DENVER (CBS4)– A small brewery in east Denver is teaching people with disabilities some valuable life skills. The Brewability Lab is located near I-70 & Peoria and only hires people with special needs.
Open for over a year now, the brewery is the brain child of Tiffany Fixter, a former special education teacher. She teaches her employees how to ring up customers, count money, and brew beer. Not only do employees get a paycheck, but they learn is how to socialize with other people.
”Sometimes you have to look back at where they started and now where they’re at. Their skill sets are skyrocketing,” Fixter told CBS4’s Dominic Garcia.
The Brewability Lab brews several different types of beer and only sells them at their bar.
Everything inside has been modified to make sure employees can easily get around.
“Everything is color-coded so you don’t have to be a reader to work for me. We have a couple that are readers and a couple that aren’t. So everyone’s different,” said Fixter.
Alex Randall is blind, but that doesn’t stop him from bartending. Braille on the bar taps helps him know what to serve customers.
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“I enjoy speaking with the customers. I’m not just a beer tender,” said Randall.
He says this job has taught him valuable social skills and has helped customers understand that despite his disability, he’s more than capable of holding down a job. He says even though he’s blind, customers know he know’s what he’s doing.
“Everyone tells me that I pour the perfect pours on every beer.”
His father said he’s seen a huge change in Alex.
“I think there’s a bit more confidence as far as carrying on conversation with strangers,” said Bob Randall.
The brewery is located at 12445 E 39th Ave #314 in Denver.