Big Issue Foundation

Will's Story

I spent five or so weeks working part-time at the Big Issue Foundation and I loved every minute of it. Having worked in a few stuffy places before, the vitality of the Big Issue Foundation team soon rebuild my faith in the working world. What is more, the value of what they do is above and beyond anything you would see in a more commercial setting. The patience and commitment of those who work with some of the most shunned and excluded members of society was honestly inspiring (and I’d dare to call myself a bit of a cynic) and, for me, coming my university student microcosm, it was a profound yet healthy reality check. “To know that I was doing my bit was satisfying; to be able to see the impact myself was a real pleasure.”

I got in touch with the Big Issue Foundation, as my university runs a programme where they support students in finding work at not-for-profit organisations. Having contacted a few different places, TBIF were by far and away the most positive and enthusiastic about my involvement, a factor that swayed me in my decision to volunteer with them and that was representative of the whole experience. They set me up with a project I could get my teeth into and gave me both support and freedom in welcome ample measure.

Despite having one of the UK’s most recognisable brands, the Big Issue Foundation is a deceptively small organisation. As a result, I had the chance to interact with people up and down the organisation, from vendors on the street to the CEO himself, with every shade of street team, editorial and outreach worker in between. This gave me brilliant insight into the inner workings of the non-profit company and social enterprise that arguably I wouldn’t have got at an organisation of similar repute.

“Since leaving, it’s been a great conversation starter. Everyone knows of the Big Issue and if they don’t they need educating!” I loved my time at the Big Issue Foundation and will always look back on it with great fondness. I’m missing the place!

National Vendor Week 2024

A celebration of people who are working their way out of poverty.
Vendor martin Hawes

Recommended for you

View all
James and Bob sign magazine to raise funds for The Big Issue Foundation
Big Issue Foundation

James and Bob sign magazine to raise funds for The Big Issue Foundation

Mark’s new business
Big Issue Foundation

Mark’s new business

Zoe Rainey and Ben Stock take part in Stage Swap
Big Issue Foundation

Zoe Rainey and Ben Stock take part in Stage Swap

Big Issue Vendor Ralph reunited with lost dog Jess
Big Issue Foundation

Big Issue Vendor Ralph reunited with lost dog Jess

Most Popular

Read All
Renters pay their landlords' buy-to-let mortgages, so they should get a share of the profits
Renters: A mortgage lender's window advertising buy-to-let products
1.

Renters pay their landlords' buy-to-let mortgages, so they should get a share of the profits

Exclusive: Disabled people are 'set up to fail' by the DWP in target-driven disability benefits system, whistleblowers reveal
Pound coins on a piece of paper with disability living allowancve
2.

Exclusive: Disabled people are 'set up to fail' by the DWP in target-driven disability benefits system, whistleblowers reveal

Here's when UK households to start receiving last cost of living payments
next dwp cost of living payment 2023
3.

Here's when UK households to start receiving last cost of living payments

Strike dates 2023: From train drivers to NHS doctors, here are the dates to know
4.

Strike dates 2023: From train drivers to NHS doctors, here are the dates to know