This morning, celebrity guest vendors met up with Megaphone staff and vendors to sell magazines and raise the profile of poverty and homelessness in our communities.
High-profile Vancouverites sell Megaphone to support homeless vendors
Vancouver, B.C. [February 6, 2018]—Thirteen high-profile Vancouverites braved the rain to sell Megaphone alongside vendors who are experiencing poverty and homelessness. Megaphone’s third annual “Big Sell” saw City of Vancouver Councillor Adriane Carr, comedian Pat Kelly from CBC’s This is That, comedian Charles Demers, Binners Project director Anna Godefry, CUPE BC president Paul Faoro, PHS Community Services Society executive director Jennifer Breakspear, Vancouver Canadians mascot Bob Brown Bear, and more came out to raise the profile of poverty and homelessness in our communities.
“I think it's important to show support to the vendors. And today is a great example, it's raining and it's cold and that's the reality for these guys," said Binners Project director Anna Godefry. “Megaphone is a great initiative,” added CUPE BC president Paul Faoro. “It builds connections between people experiencing poverty on a daily basis and folks who might live in more fortunate circumstances.”
This morning, guest vendors met up with Megaphone staff and vendors at the Art Gallery and then made their way to a two block stretch of Georgia to sell magazines for an hour.
Jennifer Breakspear, PHS Community Services Society executive director, was paired with long-time Megaphone Vendor Valerie, who gave her some tips on how to approach customers. “One thing Val taught me was not to talk about money first but to talk about what's in the paper, rather than how much it costs. And smiling! Smiling is so important,” said Breakspear.
“Megaphone is more than just a magazine. It’s a social enterprise that provides people experiencing poverty with meaningful work and income,” said Megaphone’s executive director, Jessica Hannon. “Vendors buy each magazine for 75 cents and sell it to customers for two dollars, keeping the profit. It creates flexible, low-barrier work for people who may not have access to traditional jobs, while creating connections and understanding across socio-economic divides.”
The first week of February marks International Street Paper #VendorWeek. Megaphone’s Big Sell is part of this larger, world-wide push to build awareness of street papers. Vendor Week, coordinated by INSP (International Network of Street Papers), unites over 100 street papers like Megaphone across 34 countries. Last year, 9,300 vendors sold 24 million street papers worldwide, putting a combined income of $52 million CAD directly into the pockets of people marginalized by poverty and homelessness.
Since you're already here: We’re working hard to create more low-barrier work opportunities while we build support to end poverty. The best way to help uscreate lasting change is by purchasing Megaphone Magazine every month from a vendor. Buying a magazine each month helps that individual vendor make ends meet, and it helps us build community power to make big-picture social change.