Standing in the corridor outside the exit gate of Hsinchu Railway Station, Li-qiu is waiting for customers to buy copies of Big Issue Taiwan from her. She is still adjusting after moving to her new pitch less than a month ago after construction work started at her old one. “I’m trying to get used to it. I’m not quite familiar with the environment and customers over here,” she says. Despite the fact that sales have been slow today, Li-qiu thrives on her contact with customers and is happy to be working.
Nikola Babic, 50, sells Surprise in the centre of Langenthal, Switzerland. He moved to Switzerland from Serbia five years ago and has remained in Switzerland because of political problems in his home country. He contacted Surprise while struggling to find work and is grateful to have been given the opportunity to become a vendor. He is looking forward to spending his remaining years before retirement doing the very best he can at his work.
James Jenkins sells Real Change from his pitch at the QFC grocery story on Broadway and Pike Street in Capitol Hill. Jenkins has Acute Disseminated Encephalomyelitis (ADEM), a rare neurological disorder that makes working nine-to-five unfeasible for him. He enjoys working as a Real Change vendor because it offers him the flexibility to work on the days that he feels well enough to do so.
We’ve rounded up the best of the street paper covers we’ve seen being sold on the streets this September.
The street paper network was represented at a recent gathering of the best in the magazine and publishing industry by INSP, Nikoleta Kosovac of Liceulice and Big Issue editor Paul McNamee. Spreading the word of the work of street papers, Kosovac and McNamee were involved in a panel, joined by individuals from other extremely influential publications, talking about how magazines can make change in the world.
Jan became homeless in 2000 and moved to Vienna from the Czech Republic seven years ago. He has struggled to secure long-term employment as a result of his visual impairment and returned to his work as an Augstin vendor earlier this year. Here, he talks about the importance of community and the experiences that led him back to Augustin.
INSP has been celebrating its 25th anniversary all year with events and projects, and sharing stories and memories. With more happening this month and towards the end of the year, INSP spoke to members of the network also celebrating the quarter of a century milestone in 2019 about what has changed and what is to come.
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.
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.