Songs we love: Curbside Chronicle vendors shout out the tunes they hold close alongside top-tier musicians
Who doesn’t have a song that’s made a special impact on their life? The Curbside Chronicle reached out to musicians from across the US, as well as a few of their own street paper vendors, to weigh in on the tracks that have changed the way they look at the world.
Recently, the long gestating flower shop project of Oklahoma City street paper The Curbside Chronicle finally opened. Here, we take an inside look at the opening day of Curbside Flowers, in downtown Oklahoma City, which provides people transitioning out of homelessness a workplace for their blossoming talents — one bouquet at a time.
During the course of the last year, COVID-19 has grown from an invisible threat to a pervasive international health emergency. The virus has also impacted mental health and sparked instances of relapse. Oklahoma City street paper The Curbside Chronicle spoke with those who’ve struggled with feeling alone and those working the frontlines of mental health to shine a light on the dark side of social isolation and discover some hope.
Black lives matter: Protest movement against racism, oppression and police brutality sweeps across America
Since the death of George Floyd, a young black man killed by a white police officer as his colleagues stood idly by, protests have sprung up across the US and other parts of the world calling for an end to systemic racial injustices and police brutality. American street papers were present at many of those protests.
Throughout March and April, the world changed. COVID-19 turned something as simple as a trip to the park into a memory. Yes, it’s been a struggle. But when so much of the advice hinges on staying indoors and staying isolated, what does it mean if you’re experiencing homelessness? How do you shelter in place when you have no home? We have received dispatches from different parts of the world on this subject. Today: Oklahoma City, home of The Curbside Chronicle.
Now that the world has stopped spinning as a result of the coronavirus pandemic, it’s a great time to take a moment to meet a few un-fur-gettable vendor pets and hear about their amazing impact. Pets are a huge part of Curbside Chronicle vendors’ lives and they actively brighten even their most difficult days. We hope you’re also finding comfort in your furry friends as you practice social distancing!
Vendors of The Curbside Chronicle documented their lives through a disposable camera photo essay with a magic hour theme for the Oklahoma street paper’s 55th issue, with some stunning results.
Curbside Chronicle vendors don’t just sell magazines. Although that’s probably what you’ll catch our green-vested sales force doing in public, it’s only one facet of their lives. Vendors love movies, sports and art just like anyone else. When vendors transition back into housing, it not only creates more opportunities for stability and comfort but also allows them to pursue their hobbies. From painting and drawing to tabletop gaming and leather work, here’s what some of our vendors do in their free time.
To mark the 2019 INSP Awards, we are diving into the INSP Archive to bring you the pieces crowned with editorial honours. Oklahoma City’s The Curbside Chronicle published its ‘Ghost Bikes’ photo essay last year during National Bike Month and is now the recipient of this year’s Special News Service Award.
Helping readers get to know our vendors is a big motivator for putting together street papers. For this story, The Curbside Chronicle asked vendors to document a week’s worth of meals with a food diary, curious to know more about what vendors are eating. They photographed a single day of meals from several participants. The results were mixed — everything from multiple visits to soup kitchens to eating nothing at all. But one thing was clear, most vendors experience significant food insecurity. Hopefully this piece helps illustrate how poverty affects people and what they eat every day.
The editors of The Curbside Chronicle make room in every issue to share personal stories from Curbside vendors, as their goal to document the challenges of homelessness. Homelessness can be an extremely difficult path and going it alone is never easy, which is why readers might notice that some of the magazine’s vendors have pets. In a series of conversations with Curbside vendors, we find out more about the furballs who have wagged their way into vendors hearts and become an integral part of the Curbside community.
Rhonda, a vendor for Oklahoma City street paper The Curbside Chronicle, speaks candidly here about her childhood, upbringing, experiences of abuse, marriage and fighting her way back to housing.
Curbside Chronicle vendor Steve talks in depth about his childhood, growing up, his experiences of homeless and what it is like to work as a street paper vendor in Oklahoma City.
To celebrate #VendorWeek 2018, The Big Issue Australia took an in depth look at the ways street papers around the world are creating extra employment opportunities for the people who need them most. And what better way to learn about them than from the people who are employed by and benefit from them. Social enterprises featured in the article come from these INSP members: The Big Issue Australia, =Oslo, The Curbside Chronicle, Shedia and L’Itinéraire.
Curbside vendor Mildred has faced her fair share of challenges. She tells us about her personal history and describes the ways in which being a Curbside vendor, her faith and love of art are helping her to move forward.
Darnesha first left home at age 13 to escape her mother’s abusive boyfriend. Three years ago, she moved to Oklahoma City with a controlling partner, but left him when his unreliable behaviour threatened to jeopardise their housing situation. Now she is raising her daughter on her own, and says selling The Curbside Chronicle has saved her.