26 November 2014

Fay Selvan named as new INSP Chair

Award-winning social entrepreneur Fay Selvan (left) has been appointed as the new Chair of INSP.

Fay will lead the INSP Board as they work closely with the Chief Executive to form the strategic direction of the organisation. She has been on the Board since August 2013.

As Chief Executive of The Big Life group, Fay leads the organisation that publishes The Big Issue in the North – one of the INSP’s two UK street papers, alongside The Big Issue.

Set up in 2002, The Big Life group works across the north of England to deliver a range of services and opportunities to the area’s most excluded people. As well as producing The Big Issue in the North, it also provides primary care and mental health services, family intervention, childcare, schools, employment and supported housing. Fay won the Social Enterprise Leader Award in 2011.

Fay said: “I am really honoured to take on the role of Chair and look forward to working with colleagues at INSP over the next few years.”

Fay takes over from Canadian street paper veteran Serge Lareault, who has been INSP Chair since 2006. Serge left Montréal’s L’Itinéraire in July, after 20 years with the street paper, latterly serving as CEO.

He will continue to support the street paper movement as Honorary President of INSP, taking over from former Editor-in-Chief of Reuters News, David Schlesinger. David Schlesinger will continue to support INSP through his role on the advisory board.

Serge said: “I am very proud of our accomplishments at INSP over the last eight years. Fay Selvan will continue this development work brilliantly and I will be happy, as Honorary President, to continue to support our street papers and our movement.”

Maree Aldam, INSP Chief Executive said: “We are very happy to welcome Fay Selvan as INSP’s new Chair.

“Working with Fay, INSP will continue to support and develop street papers around the world and to champion social business as a practical and powerful way to address homelessness and poverty.

“We are currently working towards our two major annual events: #VendorWeek, our global celebration of street paper sellers, which takes place from 2-8 February; and our annual conference, which will bring together street paper experts in Seattle in June next year.

“We also continue to run INSP’s unique News Service, which shares content produced by our network and our in-house team to strengthen the content of worldwide street papers.

“The entire INSP team and network would like to offer a huge thank you to Serge for his inspirational leadership of INSP. We have been very lucky to have him.

“We would also like to thank David Schlesinger for his valuable support for INSP.”

24 November 2014

‘Struggling to find water in the vast Pacific’ republished

The Big Issue Korea
Pacific Island states are surrounded by the largest ocean in the world, yet many living there struggle to get enough water to meet basic needs. People living in small villages on islands such as Upolu, the main island of Samoa, are dependent on rainfall because they have no money for water tanks or pipes. In the dry season they struggle with sanitation, washing, cooking and drinking and when droughts occur, as they did in 2011 and 2012, they can be left with no water at all. Inadequate water sources and climate change are both major problems, as is poor infrastructure.

The story by IPS was republished by The Big Issue Korea & Shedia (Greece). It can still be downloaded here.

“Der Kampf, Wasser zu finden in der Weite der Pazifik”

Inselstaaten im pazifischen Ozean liegen in der größten Wasserfläche auf der Erde, trotzdem ist es für viele Bewohner ein Kampf, genügend Wasser für die Grundbedürfnisse des Lebens zu finden. Die Bevölkerung kleiner Dörfer auf Inseln wie Upolu, der größten Insel des Staates Samoa, sind auf Regenwasser angewiesen, da sie weder Geld für Wasserleitungen oder Wasserspeichertanks haben. Während der Trockenzeit werden Abwasser, Waschen, Kochen und Trinkwasser zu handfesten Problemen und wenn es eine Dürre gibt, wie in 2011 und 2012 geschehen, gibt es für lange Zeit überhaupt kein Wasser. Es gibt wenige Quellen von Süßwasser, dazu kommen Klimaveränderungen und einen dürftige Infrastruktur. Dieser Artikel von IPS wurde in The Big Issue Korea und in Shedia (Griechenland) wiederöffentlicht. Noch immer zum Download verfügbar hier.

17 November 2014

'Susan Sarandon: Oscar winner and homeless campaigner' republished

The Big Issue Japan
Susan Sarandon is an acclaimed US actress who won an Academy Award for the 1995 film Dead Man Walking, and a BAFTA a year earlier for her role in The Client. She also starred in Thelma & Louise and The Rocky Horror Picture Show, among many other movies. Aside from acting, Sarandon is a fierce advocate for homeless rights and she campaigns to end world hunger – receiving the Action Against Hunger Humanitarian Award in 2006. Sarandon spoke to Street Sense about her son’s new documentary which she hoped would increase understanding of the issues faced by homeless people. She was also demanding that US Congress classifies violence against homeless people as a hate crime.

The story by Street Sense in the USA was republished by The Big Issue Japan. Toledo Streets (USA), One Step Away (USA), Die Strasse (Germany), Abseits!? (Germany) and Strassenkreuzer (Germany). It can still be downloaded here.

Susan Sarandon: Oscar-Gewinnerin und Kämpferin für Obdachlosen-Rechte

Die gefeierte US-Schauspielerin Susan Sarandon gewann einen Oscar für ihre Rolle in „Dead Man Walking“ (1995) und war ein Jahr vorher für ihre Rolle in „Der Klient“ für den BAFTA nominiert. Neben vielen anderen Rollen war sie in „Thelma & Louise“ und der Rocky Horror Picture Show zu sehen. Neben der Schauspielerei kämpft Sarandon entschlossen für die Rechte Obdachloser und gegen den Hunger in der Welt - dafür bekam sie 2006 den „Action Against Hunger Humanitarian Award“. Mit dem Straßenmagazin „Street Sense“ sprach Sarandon über den neuen Dokumentarfilm ihres Sohnes, von dem sie hofft, dass er das Verständnis für die Probleme von Wohnungslosen fördern könnte. Dazu fordert Sarandon, dass der US-Kongress Gewalt gegen Obdachlose als Hassverbrechen klassifiziert.


Der Artikel von „Street Sense“ (USA) ist auch in folgenden Publikationen erschienen: Im „Big Issue Japan“, „Toledo Streets“ (USA), „One Step Away“ (USA), „Die Straße“ (Deutschland), „Abseits!?“ (Deutschland) und „Straßenkreuzer“ (Deutschland). Hier können Sie ihn herunterladen

One Step Away (USA)

11 November 2014

INSP co-founder Mel Young becomes Ashoka Fellow

Chile Men's team win Homeless World Cup.
Photo: Elaine Livingstone

INSP and Big Issue in Scotland co-founder Mel Young has been elected to the prestigious position of Ashoka Fellow.

Ashoka is the world’s largest network of social entrepreneurs. Nearly 3,000 Ashoka Fellows in 70 countries are currently putting their system-changing ideas into practice on a global scale.

Young was nominated for the prestigious position by thanks to his ongoing innovative work on the Homeless World Cup.

First dreamed up at the INSP conference in Cape Town in 2001, the Homeless World Cup uses the universal language of football to bring together homeless people from around the world each year for a tournament that breaks down barriers and smashes stereotypes.

Mel Young & Dominicus Hangara
Photo: Danielle Batist
It uses the power of football to energise homeless people so they can change their own lives.

The first event in 2003 saw 17 countries compete, sourcing teams from wherever they could.

Now, Young works with partners in 73 countries across a network that has initiated, supported and catalysed a wave of professionalised homeless leagues around the world. Finalists are then selected to represent their countries.

Through these many partners, the lives of some 250,000 homeless football players are touched each year.

This year’s tournament was held in Santiago, Chile in October and saw 432 players come together for an exciting week-long tournament. Both the women’s and men’s competitions were eventually won by the home nation.


10 November 2014

Calling out around the world! Dancing in the street with Portland’s Street Roots


The Street Roots team are dancing in the streets of Oregon in a brand new celebratory video, as the street paper prepares to go from a fortnightly to a weekly publication.

The unique flashmob-style video follows the paper from printer to public, culminating in a toe-tapping finale.

It is at the forefront of a fundraising drive to help the paper double its print frequency.

Since 1998, Street Roots has been Portland’s flagship publication addressing homelessness and poverty.

From 2 January 2015 their vendors will have a new paper to sell every Friday.

“Street Roots will be going from a biweekly to a weekly publication schedule to give vendors a more stable income week-in and week-out,” said Street Roots Executive Director Israel Bayer.

“It will allow the organisation to deliver quality journalism and commentary to our readers on a more timely basis. It's an exciting time for Street Roots and Portland.”

Vendor Eddie Zuber praised the award-winning publication. “Selling the newspaper makes my life feel more fulfilled,” he said.

“When I could not work because of my physical strength, I was able to sell the paper. There are so many good things I can say about selling Street Roots.”

For more information about Street Roots and their fundraising drive, see their website.