An unexpected message on social media brought Jamar Washington back into contact with his birth mother and family in 2018. His mother, Raelene Johnson – a Denver Voice vendor – reluctantly gave him up for foster care when he was three. This is the story of how fate brought them back together and how they are reconnecting with each other after so many years apart.
Larmarques Smith moved to Denver two years ago. Haunted by the death of his partner from an over-dose, Larmarques found it impossible to stay in Indiana, despite the fact that he had built a life for himself there. Living on the streets has been tough for him, as those around him have no knowledge of what he has been through. This is precisely what motivates Larmarques to reach out to others: he hopes to provide them with the sort of support that he himself is looking for.
To mark #VendorWeek 2018, US street paper Denver VOICE published a four-page spread completely dedicated to their vendors, as well as hosting a Big Sell event in the city. In the feature, vendors talk about their pitch, their daily routine, and we even here from readers showing their appreciation for their local vendor.
Today, North American street papers will join in with the #VendorWeek celebrations by hosting selling events, some for the first time. This #VendorWeek tradition is a chance for those unfamiliar with the street paper movement to understand better what street paper vendors do.
As 2017 draws to a close, we asked vendors across the global street paper network to look back on the highs and lows of their year. Dwayne, a Denver Voice vendor, has spent 2017 getting his things in order with the hope of moving off the streets.
Cynthia, a talented and passionate dancer, moved to Denver to help out her brother who was experiencing homeless. By getting involved with selling street papers, she has found a bigger family than she could ever have expected.
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.
For Armand Casazza, selling Denver Voice was a chance to start anew. The job helps him face the challenges of a troubled past with an ever-present grin.
The first issue of Denver Voice was put together on a single typewriter. Now it’s celebrating 20 years, and offering employment to more than 4000 people.
Volunteers for U.S. street paper Denver Voice took to the streets to offer people who are sleeping rough in the city the chance to join their team of vendors.
Denver Voice vendor Gary Davis is a prime example of turning mistakes into stepping stones on the path to success. Gary has battled alcohol addiction, a problem which has led to him to homelessness more than once – but the Denver Voice helps him stay sober.
One year after the death of Freddie Gray, we revisit Denver VOICE vendor Dwayne’s interview with Baltimore vendor Damien about the ensuing unrest.