Saturday, June 23, 2012

The Big Issue

The Big Issue is aimed at helping homeless people get back on their feet, by giving them a legitimate means of earning income from sales of this magazine. Each copy of the magazine costs £2.50, and sellers keep £1.25.

Today I met a friendly fellow near where I am taking my piano lessons, and resolved to ask him a bit more about how he finds selling this magazine, and if it helps.

According to this seller, who was once homeless, selling The Big Issue has changed his life from being once homeless to someone who now has a roof over his head.

He sells seemingly 80 to 100 copies a week, and on a good week, perhaps a dozen more.

He says that it was difficult when starting out. New sellers are simply not sure how this would work out for them, and they have no confidence that this would actually really help them. People totally ignoring them is also a major bash against their self esteem. (He also mentions that it would help ALOT even if we were to smile and greet The Big Issue sellers, even if we do not purchase a magazine.)

For this gent I was speaking to, it turned out well for him. Most of his sales are on weekdays, with the working crowd passing to and fro the train stations and their offices. Saturday is a quiet day, and he takes Sunday as his day off.

In the future when I meet more big issue sellers, I'll be sure to spare them a moment to acknowledge them, even if I'd already picked up my weekly copy. I truly hope that after this gets them off the street, that they will be able to build an even better future for themselves.

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