It's a concept that challenges many people. So much so that when I'm asked what I do for a living, I usually just say, "I sell wine."
Adding the bit about giving away half your profits seems to make some people very uncomfortable. I can see them desperately searching for the catch, except there isn't one. The simple fact is that this business is not going not make me extremely rich. But that's not what life is really about is it?
By now some of you may be familiar with my Black Saturday story. It was a difficult time, and while I have been a volunteer for most of my adult life (I'm currently a volunteer firefighter in my little town) I had never experienced what it was like to be on the receiving end of help. It turns out that help is really hard to ask for, but when I finally worked up the courage, it was there in spadefulls.
It was like opening a floodgate. It came from friends and strangers, clubs and businesses, big and small aid organisations and of course all of those coins people put into tins around the country. And so it was people like you who gave me the chance to start again. But more importantly you gave me a profound insight into human goodwill. And it was intoxicating.
The whole experience for me has been life-changing; not in a finding 'God' kind of way but in a finding 'Us' way. Losing most of what you own only highlighted to me what was important in life. We are not here for very long and it reinforced for me that it is how we choose to treat others that makes this life worth living.
So instead of replacing what was lost, I decided to double down on what was found. I took the $15,000 that you gave me through the Red Cross Bushfire Appeal and chose to chance my arm on something that would bring people together and make them happy, while giving back to those in need. A website was built, I called in some favours with some amazing vineyards, and for the first time in 40 years I found my purpose. And that is why I give away half my profit.
"I am not a wine expert, but my brothers-in-law are, and your wine passed the test."
~ Mark, King Lake, Vic
"Fortunate enough to have partaken in your Shiraz the other night. Supreme!!"
~ Michelle, Daylesford, Vic
"Can't say enough about the quality of your product and service!"
~ Michael, Fortitude Valley, Qld
"The last order of wines I got recieved rave reviews from our dinner guests."
~ Lee, Brunswick, Vic
"Great service, beautiful wines, fast delivery; all while helping animals. Can't get better than that."
~ Fiona, Marrickville, NSW