INSP News Service

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The INSP News Service is one of our key member services, providing editorial support to street papers to build their capacity and quality, and increase vendors’ sales. These highlights from our weekly members' news feed demonstrate the talent working in the street paper movement.

News posts by INSP News Service:

Where Were You 25 Years Ago? From Homelessness to Finding a Home at L’Itinéraire

Like INSP, this year Montréal street paper L’Itinéraire is celebrating its 25th anniversary. In a special edition of the magazine to coincide with celebrations of the milestone, L’Itinéraire vendor Jean-Paul Lebel wrote candidly about his break-up, drug use, how he got involved selling the street paper and the effect that has had on his life.

Our vendors: Keira (The Big Issue Australia, Sydney, Australia)

Keira sells The Big Issue from her pitch at Miranda train station, Sydney. She has been working for The Big Issue since leaving school and is grateful for the community that exists among those working for the paper. Keira has been a wheelchair user since having an operation to remove a brain stem tumour when she was eight and has been a long-time advocate for those who use wheelchairs. She views her work as a vendor as another important aspect of her efforts to increase awareness.

Vendor City Guide: Naples

The Big Issue has been reaching out to vendors across the street paper network to get the inside scoop on the cities they know best. This instalment features Scarp de’ tenis vendor Sergio Gatto talking about Naples.

Our vendors: Palmer Efosa (zebra., Merano, Italy)

34-year-old zebra., vendor Palmer is originally from Nigeria. He spoke to the street paper about his childhood, looking for work and how much he enjoys talking to the elderly as he’s selling the street paper.

Life on the Streets: Beating the heat

Summer may be over, but due to pollution, the trapping of heat in urban areas and global warming, the autumn months may not prove to be much cooler for people living on the streets. In a periodic column about the parts of homelessness most people don’t talk about, Street Roots vendors talk about the burden of living on the streets when the weather is hot.

Our vendors: Mjongeni Malanti (The Big Issue South Africa, Cape Town)

Mjongeni Malanti is a single father and a man of many talents. He is quick to learn, has many different skills and finds great pleasure in photography. Malanti believes in persevering, no matter what obstacles are in his path.

South Tyrol’s zebra. follows in street papers’ footsteps with first CEO selling event

CEO selling events are a staple way for street papers to drum up interest and educate both high-flying business people and celebrities, as well as regular members of the public, on the work they do. South Tyrol’s zebra. held their first ever such event earlier this month, inviting sports brand mogul Heiner Oberrauch to sell the street paper with vendor David Charles for an afternoon. The magazine’s editor Lisa Frei reports back on how it went.

Our vendors: Remus Diaconescu (The Big Issue, London, UK)

Remus has previous for selling street papers. In fact, he’s a bit of a veteran after a six-year stint as a vendor in Amsterdam. Now, he is selling The Big Issue in London, and using the skills he has learned to hone his craft in this new environment. He will also get the chance to utilise The Big Issue’s new contactless payments scheme.

Passion projects: Curbside Chronicle vendors on their hobbies

Curbside Chronicle vendors don’t just sell magazines. Although that’s probably what you’ll catch our green-vested sales force doing in public, it’s only one facet of their lives. Vendors love movies, sports and art just like anyone else. When vendors transition back into housing, it not only creates more opportunities for stability and comfort but also allows them to pursue their hobbies. From painting and drawing to tabletop gaming and leather work, here’s what some of our vendors do in their free time.

Our vendors: The Bear Whisperer (Megaphone, Vancouver, Canada)

The Bear Whisperer is a vendor who sells Megaphone, the Hope in Shadows calendar and Voices of the Street literary anthology in downtown Vancouver. This is a story of his travelling days, hard work and journey to British Columbia – the province where he found the opportunities that changed his life.

Our vendors: Richard Gerrard (Megaphone, Victoria, Canada)

Richard Gerrard has been selling street papers in Victoria since 2007 and became a Megaphone vendor in 2014. As well as enjoying his Saturday shifts selling the paper from his pitch outside the Bay Centre on Douglas Street, Victoria, Gerrard enjoys creating things, history and the occasional sweet treat.

Real Change turns 25: Q&A with Founding Director Tim Harris

INSP turns 25 this year, but so do a number of our street paper members. Real Change in Seattle is just one of them. To mark it, the paper’s reporter Ashley Archibald spoke to its founding director Tim Harris about the past, present and future of the street paper movement.