The Big Issue exists to help homeless people and those facing poverty and inequality by creating opportunity. The Big Issue magazine was launched in 1991 in response to the growing number of rough sleeps on the streets of London. The magazine offered — and continues to offer — a legitimate way for homeless people to earn an income by selling, not begging. Since launch, over 200 million copies of the magazine have been sold and it has won several awards. The Big Issue Group is also includes other arms of the brand. Big Issue Foundation also strives to dismantle poverty by funding sustainable social enterprises and charities across the UK, offering loans and investment from £20,000 to £3 million. Meanwhile, The Big Issue Foundation is an independently funded registered charity, which works exclusively with the Big Issue vendors, connecting them to the vital support they need to enable them to rebuild their lives and determine their own pathways to a better future. Finally, The Big Issue Shop – the newest addition to The Big Issue Group – is a social trading platform that makes ethical and social shopping truly, giving shoppers the opportunity to use their spending power to make a positive difference to the world we live in.