Three months ago we shared Mick’s story, a Big Issue seller from Birmingham. Mick was on a journey to find peace with his past and an opportunity to look to the future. The Big Issue Foundation supported Mick to get a passport so that he could be reunited with his Mum in Tenerife after 27 years apart. We are so happy to report that three weeks ago, Mick, along with his brother and sister, travelled to Spain and reconnected with his family. This trip allowed Mick to finally bring peace to a part of his life and end a lifetime of questions.
Here you can read all the latest fundraising and charity news from The Big Issue Foundation, keeping you up to date with our charity work to help people who are homeless across the UK. Whether it’s a message from our CEO, or the voice of someone that actually spent time sleeping rough on the streets, here you can read all the latest from The Big Issue Foundation.
We run a wide range of charity events throughout the year, so here is the best place to keep up with the progress and funds that have been raised for the less fortunate in the UK. If you are considering volunteering for The Big Issue Foundation, then here you can also see some of the ways that people have raised money in the past to get people off the streets.
Stories from those who have been unfortunate enough to live on the street are also posted here, helping to give you an insight into the difficulties that our Big Issue vendors are faced with every day.
If you are inspired by any of the stories found here, why not donate to The Big Issue Foundation today? There is a range of ways that your money can be used to help those who are homeless across the UK take control of their lives.
Last month through the support of his customers, Middlesbrough Big Issue Vendor, Darren Brown was able to access our Vendor Support Fund to contribute to purchasing a much needed washing machine for his new house. Darren had already saved up money to buy basic items for his home, but was in need of a washing machine as his trips to the laundrette was becoming too expensive.
We are pleased to announce that The Big Sleep Out is back and will be taking place on Friday 7th August in Central London. Join us for our fourth Big Sleep Out in London as we bed down in a Victorian railway arch in Beaconsfield, Vauxhall.
The Big Sleep Out is not a full a ‘homeless experience’ but the idea is to abandon your comfort zone and negotiate a night’s sleep in a cold, not so comfortable environment. Join us to show support, channel awareness and raise much needed funds to support Big Issue vendors out of rough sleeping.
Wednesday 10th June 2015 saw some of our key supporters, vendors, frontline staff and fundraisers come together at our Vauxhall distribution centre to celebrate our joint achievements over the past year.
Matt Morley, London Area Service Manager, told the audience about Mike, for whom selling The Big Issue is providing the necessary space to think about the steps he needs to take to move onto a more stable future; Amy, who became homeless after losing her job but now sells her magazine at a unique indoor pitch in Euston Station; George, who came to London after losing everything (mother, partner, home) in search of a new start only to find himself living in a hostel but who is now rebuilding his life while supporting other vendors; Ron, who with the help of The Big Issue Foundation now receives a pension and has a home; and Bean, who after years of involvement with us will hang up his tabard for the last time in September as he embarks on full-time employment at London Pathway as their Care Navigator – a role that will enable Bean to use his experience and expertise to connect people who are homeless with medical support.
Today we have a great team from Dunnhumby out on the streets of London, finding out what it’s like to sell The Big Issue. All the money raised by the volunteers goes to the vendors who are providing expert training & advice in the art of face-to-face sales.
Imagine losing the most important things in your life, perhaps your home, your relationship(s), your sense of yourself…Not everyone’s response to such extreme experiences would be to start their own business. But that is exactly what Big Issue vendors are doing. The magazine is sold exclusively to people who are experiencing extreme social & financial exclusion, often with periods of “homelessness” in the mix. Vendors buy their magazines with their own cash & sell at their own profit or loss. Each magazine costs them £1.25 & they sell it on for £2.50 per copy. We do not buy back unsold copies.
We work with some of the most socially & financially excluded people in our Country, people who have made the positive decision to start their own business at a time of often deep personal crisis. Last year our services team worked with over 2200 Big Issue Vendors, achieving over 27,000 service contacts & more than 5800 positive outcomes, a record breaking year of achievements for Big Issue Vendors. The average fully cost recovered price per outcome fell to just £150, representing exceptional value for money in an increasingly complex environment.
Each step that each vendor takes in their journey away from homelessness represents a huge achievement. Here are some highlights from our frontline team from last year.
This week is ‘Small Charity Week’. The week celebrates and raises awareness of the essential work of the UK’s small charity sector who make an invaluable contribution to the lives of millions of individuals, communities and causes across the UK and the rest of the world.
The week is organised by the Foundation for Social Improvement (FSI), who with the support of partner organisations ensure the work of small charities is recognised and celebrated.
This Saturday, 13th June, The Big Noise festival kicks off again, in aid of The Big Issue Foundation.
The Big Noise was set up in 2013 to promote awareness of homelessness and related social issues, whilst raising funds for the Foundation. This year, the festival expands into Elephant and Castle’s The Coronet; and is spread over a selection of spaces which have been transformed by the festival’s design team.
On the 4th of June we celebrated with Hackney’s Big Issue Vendor Kevin Headley, as he graduated as one of Groundswell's 'Homeless Health Peer Advocates'. Kevin is now qualified to help people who are homeless access appropriate healthcare.
Graduation is a proud moment for any student; it is a time of completion, of finishing, of an ending but also a time of celebration of achievement and a beginning.
We’re really excited for The Big Noise Festival tomorrow evening at The Coronet. After months of hard work by a group of dedicated volunteers, tomorrow will see a great line up of musicians, artists, actors, poets and DJs taking to the stage to raise money for The Big Issue Foundation.