Street Roots

Portland, OR, United States
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INSP Awards: Best Cover 2017 Nominees Revealed

It’s been another brilliant year for street paper covers, and we’re delighted to announce the first set of nominees for this year’s INSP Awards – kicking off with the hotly-contested Best Cover category.

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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.

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“This opportunity is thrilling” – INSP’s new Intensive Learning Programme kicks off

Participants about to set off on international placement scheme to strengthen street papers and share ideas.

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Our vendors: Norm Chamberlin (Street Roots, Portland, Oregon, USA)

When Norm lost his job and his home, it was thanks to the kindness of a stranger he ended up in housing once again. Now he sells Street Roots, accompanied by his dog Heidi. He says being a vendor is an adventure – and good for his mental health.

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#VendorWeek interview: James and John share two sides of North American vendor life

They’re both North American street paper vendors, yet over a recent Skype interview James and John – from Montréal and Portland respectively – discovered that Canadian and American vendor life can be very different.

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Vendor wishes: “I wish for peace in people’s hearts”

Eileen and Mike both sell Street Roots in Portland, USA. They join our vendor wishes series, both calling on the government to tackle affordable housing.

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Our vendors: Janick Webb (Street Roots, Portland, USA)

“I stay positive by recognising the negatives first,” says Street Roots vendor Janick. “Get those out of the way, and figure out how to change the things you can change.”

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“How will you reach out to people like me?” street papers respond to President Trump

International street paper staff and vendors responded with surprise and apprehension following the election of Donald Trump as the next President of the USA.

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Street Roots’ Cole Merkel wins Skidmore Prize for work with vendors

Street Roots’ inspiring Vendor Program Director, Cole Merkel, has been awarded the 2016 Skidmore Prize for his tireless work to support the Portland paper’s 150 vendors.

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Prophets of Rage to Bridget Jones – September street paper supporters

There’s support from big name stars featured on this month’s covers – but also stark reminders of why street papers are so necessary for homeless people.

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“We are a part of something much greater” – INSP summit scholarships enhance street paper movement

INSP scholarships to the Global Street Paper Summit allow emerging street papers to learn from the expertise within the network, and bring new voices to the global conversation.

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Olympic fever gripped world’s street papers this August

August’s street paper covers have the Olympic spirit, featuring ‘cuddly lawnmowers’, a homeless wedding, Steven Spielberg, and a cheeky little bit of rickrolling.

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Sizzling summer street paper covers are animal mad!

Soak up a summery selection of animal-mad street paper covers with pugs, wolves, chickens, seagulls and crabs – plus Pikachu and the fish star of Finding Dory.

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Portland street paper campaigns for safe injection sites

“Opiate overdoses are wreaking havoc on people experiencing homelessness” in Oregon, USA. Portland street paper Street Roots has joined with other local activists to campaign for safe injection sites that they say will stop preventable deaths, and reduce drug-related litter.

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Hard-hitting, striking… phizz-whizzing: it’s June’s street paper covers

A gloriumptious look at the world of Roald Dahl, a red-haired mischief-maker, a mafia flower plot and Yanis Varoufakis at the INSP Summit… explore June’s street paper covers.

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INSP Awards: street paper finalists for Best Online Presence

Like all print media, cultivating a strong online presence is becoming increasingly important for the world’s street papers. Meet our four tech-savvy finalists for Best Online Presence.

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Our vendors: Bill Whicher (Street Roots, Portland, Oregon, USA)

Bill Whicher has a career that reads like the economic headlines, only more personal. He was born in Portsmouth, New Hampshire, USA, and now sells Street Roots in Portland.

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“Homelessness is not normal”: powerful TED talk from Street Roots director

At the end of WW2, street homelessness was largely non-existent in America. Yet hundreds of thousands of people will sleep rough in the USA tonight. What happened?

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Hard-hitting Street Roots zine shares Portland vendors’ experiences of sleeping rough

Street Roots vendors share their stories of homelessness and sleeping rough in a visually stunning black and white zine published by the Portland street paper.

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Campaigning and celebrating with April’s street paper covers

The mood in the network feels celebratory this April, with some big anniversaries and some big names. Street paper covers applaud some true heroes – including Luke Skywalker, Korean escapees, and our vendors.

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“It’s not often you see a homeless vendor in a suit”: vendors from Massachusetts and Oregon meet

Street Roots vendor Marlon and Spare Change’s Mike are from opposite ends of the USA, but when they met they found common ground – as they both sell street papers.

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March’s covers reveal the power of illustration

From fierce illustrations to wild covers, experience dozens of the world’s best street paper artwork from the last month.

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Stunning photos place focus on Portland’s homeless

With his project Careful: Soul Inside, photographer Pedro Oliveira aims to break the “social wall” that makes homeless people invisible. His photos and stories emphasise the humanity of his subjects.

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Rock gods to proud vendors: February’s street paper covers are out of this world

From rock gods to proud vendors, February’s street paper covers featured lots of fascinating and inspiring people. Explore the world’s street papers here.

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Street Roots’ #VendorWeek celebration captures Portland’s imagination

#VendorWeek may be over, but we’re looking back at some of the best bits. Street Roots were out in force on Twitter to celebrate their vendors. They also shared a moving video about Marlon – their best dressed vendor.

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Starting 2016 with street papers: January’s covers collected

Haruki Murakami, Beyonce and Bowie all graced January editions of street papers.

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World’s street papers celebrate #VendorWeek 2016

It’s only Day 2 and INSP’s fourth international #VendorWeek is already in full swing. Here’s how dozens of street papers are joining the celebration worldwide.

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Weekly publication triumph marks an extraordinary year for Street Roots

One year after doubling their print run to become a weekly publication, the staff at Portland street paper Street Roots are celebrating increased sales, higher morale, more quality news – and extra dollars in the pockets of their vendors.

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“The boat was close enough for us to see the scared children” – helping refugees on Lesvos

What is the reality of helping refugees in the Greek island of Lesvos? One volunteer recounts her emotional story from the front line of the crisis.

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Vendors celebrate Christmas across the world

Our street paper members are all over the world. Here is how some vendors are spending Christmas at their street paper.

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INSP Advent Calendar: Christmas Eve

In the final window of this year’s #INSPadvent Billy tells us “It’s all about love.” We couldn’t think of a better message. Merry Christmas, everyone.

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Explore dozens of this month’s brilliant street paper covers

The Pope, Bond, Naomi Klein, great illustrations… and a blue wolf. It must be November’s street paper covers.

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#BuckTheSystem with Portland street paper Street Roots

Portland’s Street Roots calls on customers to #BuckTheSystem with a new initiative that promotes the street paper’s social impact and quality journalism.

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Street Roots celebrates its readers after extraordinarily successful year

Street Roots has had an extraordinary year. In a guest opinion piece, editor Joanne Zuhl tells INSP that it’s down to their readers (and a little help from our News Service).

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Fancy a scoop with your paper?

Sweet-toothed Portlanders have a new way to support their local street paper, as Street Roots launches their first ice cream sale – and a brand new, exclusive flavour.

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Our vendors: William Howard (Street Roots – Portland, Oregon, USA)

“I’m going to sell papers, get off the streets and be a productive citizen,” vowed William Howard when he first started selling Street Roots in Portland, Oregon. And that’s exactly what he did.

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American police arrest homeless woman for charging phone

A homeless Portland woman was charged with third-degree theft when she plugged her cellphone charger into an outdoor electrical outlet.

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American students provide homeless women with free pads and tampons

For women, menstruation is a natural and regular part of life. But for those experiencing homelessness, finding a pad or tampon can be harder than finding a meal or a new pair of socks.

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Our vendors: Harry Richards – Street Roots, Portland

Drug addiction led Harry Richards into homelessness and eventually prison. But time behind bars helped him discover a new habit – drawing. The aspiring artist now earns a living selling Street Roots from his pitch […]

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Our vendors: Paul Ortiz – Street Roots, Portland, USA

On a cold, spitting December afternoon Paul Ortiz walks from the food carts at Southwest Third Avenue and Stark Street back to the Street Roots office to check his mail and pick up more papers. Paul began […]

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Calling out around the world! Dancing in the street with Portland’s Street Roots

The Street Roots team are dancing in the streets of Oregon in a brand new celebratory video, as the street paper prepares to go from a fortnightly to a weekly publication. The unique flashmob-style video […]