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Issue 1227 - 25 Years

Well now, here we are.
25 years ago John Bird set the ball rolling. So we’re going to celebrate a generation of change.

PM Theresa May salutes The Big Issue and unveils a new homelessness funding package and a change of policy approach. Are we claiming an influence? Well, she says "Just like The Big Issue, I also believe in the power of prevention… I believe it’s time we changed our approach. We need to put prevention at the heart of a new approach.” We’ll claim it.

There is an array of other names from across politics, music, the arts and business saluting The Big Issue and talking about what it means to them. They include Nicola Sturgeon, Sadiq Khan, Leanne Woods, Daniel Radcliffe, Andy Murray, Julie Walters, Christopher Eccleston, Benjamin Zephaniah, the Dalai Lama, Paul Weller and many more. There is also a film coming on Monday featuring these folk and others, all talking Big Issue. It’s soundtracked by violin virtuoso Nicola Benedetti and the RSNO performing a very special rendition of Happy Birthday.

The story of the birth of the Big Issue - the early wonderful chaos that lead to so much – has never really been told. Peter Ross has gathered together those who were there and delivers a brilliant, blistering, heart-lifting must-read.
The guvnor John Bird reflects on 25 years gone and looks to what will come next. A focus on literacy is going to be a major cornerstone for us. It’s fundamental.
"I'm sure the Daily Mail would be happy to know they facilitated my sexual fetish,” says Grayson Perry. A big birthday special needs a big Letter To My Younger Self. This one is a cracker. Get ready…

We bring stories of the successes of many of our ex-vendors who moved on to establish great new businesses of their own – from Harley Street therapists to chefs, kids books illustrators and charity bosses.

There is a cake, of course, baked by the good people at Rise bakery, a fantastic organisation who help provide training and opportunity for homeless trainees. Our own version of Hollywood and Berry, vendors Graham and Paul from central London, taste the result. No soggy bottoms. So to speak.
Our featured vendor this week is Donato Barbieri. He is 70 and has been selling for a number of months. Life has thrown a lot at him, but, he says "The Big Issue gave an old man a sense of purpose again.” Which is a fitting way to round off this edition, I think.

There is much more inside but I’ll leave to you to get the mag and enjoy the ramble around.

Please note once this edition is no longer on sale with Big Issue vendors (from Monday 24th October) it will be classed as a 'back issue'. All back issues are priced at £4 per copy plus P&P

The Big Issue

The Big Issue’s own-brand products support the creation of a range of work-based opportunities for disadvantaged people.
The Big Issue has spent over 27 years at the helm of self-help revolution. It all began with the launch of The Big Issue magazine in 1991, which was created to offer homeless and disadvantaged people the opportunity to earn a legitimate income by selling a magazine on the streets. Since then over 200 million copies magazine have been sold by over 100,000 people. Vendors buy the magazine upfront for £1.25 and sell it on to the public for £2.50, and in doing so each runs their own micro-enterprise. In 2005 Big Issue Invest was launched, with the aim of extending The Big Issue’s mission by financing the growth of social enterprises and charities across the UK. To date the organisation has directly invested in over 350 such organisations, and manages or advises on more than £170 million of social funds.
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