Big praise for the Big Sell-Off

INSP’s inaugural Big Sell-Off, in association with The Big Issue, was highly commended at

INSP’s Zoe Greenfield & Maree Aldam celebrate

Scotland’s most prestigious fundraising awards on Tuesday night.

The Institute of Fundraising Scotland praised February’s event, which raised more than £25,000 for INSP, whilst raising the profile of the charity and boosting sales of The Big Issue.

The event saw 30 high profile guest vendors sell The Big Issue, including Green MSP Patrick Harvie; author Alan Bissett; the Rt. Hon. Donald Wilson, Lord Provost of the City of Edinburgh; and Herald and Times Group Managing Director Tim Blott.

“The first event of its kind, the Big Sell-Off 2014 was a highly successful fundraising and publicity event for both INSP and The Big Issue,” said awards host and innovation expert Lucy Gower.

“Over £25,000 was raised for INSP – more than double the fundraising target. The event secured extensive media coverage, including two slots on STV news, and served as a huge morale boost for Big Issue vendors and staff.”

The event was also applauded for its scalability – INSP is already working to expand the reach of the Big Sell-Off for #VendorWeek 2015.

INSP Chief Executive Maree Aldam said that she was delighted with the accolade.

“We are thrilled that IOF Scotland has recognised this innovative and enormously successful fundraising event,” she added.

“The Big Sell-Off does more than just raise money – it also gives our guest vendors an amazing opportunity to work with street paper sellers and understand the challenges they face. Many of the guest vendors have gone on to be ambassadors for the the street paper movement.”

Aldam paid tribute to the hard work and dedication that went into making the Big Sell-Off such a success. “I’d like to say a big thank you from the INSP to the team at The Big Issue; to all our guest vendors and, most of all, to every one of the real Big Issue vendors who work so hard every day – you are an inspiration.

“We are already looking forward to next year’s event and to making the Big Sell-Off 2015 even bigger and better.”

An important part of the INSP’s annual #VendorWeek, which celebrates the homeless people who sell street papers, the Big Sell-Off saw 30 high-profile individuals sell The Big Issue on the streets of Glasgow and Edinburgh. They raised sponsorship through their own networks.

INSP was nominated for the IOF Scotland Community and Events Award alongside the Prince’s Trust Scotland and the National Trust for Scotland. Prince’s Trust Scotland was the eventual winner, with INSP taking the highly commended spot.

“We are very proud to have been nominated alongside such fantastic organisations,” added Aldam. “The IoF Scotland event really showed the fantastic quality of charity work going on in Scotland.”

We are now looking for high profile individuals to take on the Big Sell-Off in February 2015 across the UK. If you think you’re up to the challenge, please get in touch.