Bishop Paul took to the streets of Liverpool One on Monday 1st February to sell The Big Issue North during Vendor Week, a campaign to raise awareness of the challenges facing those who sell it.
#Vendor Week began in 2015, as an initiative of the International Network of Street Papers (INSP), which supports and develops 112 street papers in 34 countries and 23 languages.
INSP’s work has already helped to support more than 250,000 vendors of street papers who are homeless or poverty-stricken, allowing them to help themselves and improve their lives.
Vendor Week involves people in politics, art, business and other high profile roles selling The Big Issue around the country. Joining Bishop Paul for this year’s campaign were former Lord Mayor of Liverpool, Councillor Gary Millar and lead guitarist with The Farm, Keith Mullen. They followed the great success of #Vendor Week’s first year which raised more than £11,000, and hoped to beat that target to allow INSP’s work to support vendors to continue to grow in the coming year.
Bishop Paul said, “The Big Issue is a smart, well-written magazine full of sharp and interesting articles. But selling it on the street is a difficult business and I greatly admire the Big Issue vendors who work hard in all weathers. I have always admired the Big Issue’s philosophy of helping people to help themselves and to recognise their dignity and the value in who they are. It strikes me that this is part of what Jesus calls us to do.”
Bishop Paul was on the pitch in Liverpool One near the Build-a-Bear Workshop for one hour from 5:30pm. All of the money raised from his sales went to the vendor who mentored him on the day.
People who are homeless or suffering through poverty buy copies of the weekly magazine so they can then sell them to the general public at all times of the year and in all kinds of weather. This gives people who have few other means to work the opportunity to gain enough money to live with respect and dignity which other options simply cannot give them. Find out more here.