After 27 years of homelessness, Nashville street paper vendor gets his own apartment

Army veteran Anthony hasn’t had a home to call his own for 27 years. But after seven years’ hard work selling The Contributor, he finally has his own place.

Our vendors: Maria D. (Street Roots, Portland, Oregon, USA)

Maria has always held physically demanding jobs, but recently that has been causing her pain and difficulty. Selling Street Roots gives her independence while she finds the right career. “They have always welcomed me,” she says.

Our vendors: Bluey (The Big Issue, Melbourne, Australia)

After surviving an attempt on his life, Bluey developed PTSD. Drug use eventually cost him his career and he became homeless and isolated. Selling The Big Issue has helped him re-engage and secure a roof over his head, as well as enjoy a good book or a movie when his finances allow.

“It’s impossible to count the number of lives Michael Stoops changed”

U.S. campaigner Michael Stoops, who passed away this week, spent decades fighting for people experiencing homelessness. Street Sense pays tribute.

Our vendors: Rainer (Hinz&Kunzt, Hamburg, Germany)

Rainer has always loved sailing, so after years of unstable employment he was happy to turn his hobby into a career. The boat became his home, so when his employer filed for bankruptcy he lost more than just his job. Through Hinz&Kunzt he has found new work, and hopes to one day buy his own boat.

Refugee couple fight to be reunited for their wedding

In December 2015 Laila, a refugee from Yemen, and Toufik, a Moroccan looking for a better life, went to the immigration office to get papers for their wedding. Instead he was arrested and deported. Surprise tells the story of their fight to be reunited.

Our vendors: Nathanial Trotter (Denver Voice, Denver, Colorado, USA)

Nathanial is an entrepreneur, inventor and artist, but what truly defines him is his talent for making friends. His customers feel they can open up to him, returning time and again to talk – and buy the paper.

Formerly homeless woman leads street backpack programme in Nashville

After Hurricane Ivan, Jessica Thurmond lost her home and was forced to live in her car. Jessica found help through the kindness of strangers – and now she wants to pay that compassion forward.

Our vendors: Heiko Schmitz (Surprise, Basel, Switzerland)

In 2013, Heiko lost his job, his marriage and his apartment. He lived under a bridge for two years. Just as he was getting help, his daughter died and he turned to drink, but he has managed to turn things around again. Now he is a Surprise vendor, and a city tour guide.

‘Rapid rehousing’ scheme brings joy – and money worries – for Seattle vendor

After five years of homelessness, Real Change vendor Lisa Sawyer finally got somewhere to live with her boyfriend. Now it looks like her new home may be slipping away. 

The art of healing: facing bipolar using abstract art photography

Curbside Chronicle vendor Chazzi Davis lives with bipolar disorder. Twenty years ago, he lost everything due to his mental health issues. He can never have his old life back, but has found that photography – and selling the paper – is like therapy.

Rita: a tribute to Boca da Rua’s fighter

Rita’s last message to her friends at Brazilian street paper Boca de Rua was: “I can’t come to the meeting because I need a bandage on my heart.” She died in hospital shortly after. This is their tribute to her.