The Big Issue has been developing a corporate subscription initiative to support our mission: dismantling poverty by offering training and employability programs for vulnerable and marginalised groups, including Big Issue vendors.
Through these programs – like our sheltered employment initiative – we will help people build the confidence, skills and knowledge they need to move on to mainstream employment and more stable lives.
We spoke to one of our new sponsors, Caridon Property, about how their values align with The Big Issue’s, and why they want to play a part in helping vulnerable people get back on their feet.
Tell us a little bit about your organisation.
We’re based in Croydon and were founded in 2009 as a family-run business when our founder and CEO, Mario Carrozzo, housed a homeless person in one of his own properties. Today we are a successful company employing c.95 people. We create value in the property sector whilst making a difference in social housing and development, by helping to ease the housing crisis with bespoke, inexpensive, modern accommodation.
Over time the company has matured into a successful and multi-award winning business operating in the UK residential property market, servicing both the social and private sectors. The business acquires, invests in and develops assets; as well as offering a range of services to both landlords and tenants.
— Caridon Property (@CaridonProperty) August 20, 2019
How do your organisation’s values align with The Big Issue?
The Big Issue’s aim to offer homeless people, or those at risk of homelessness, the opportunity to earn a legitimate income and to help them reintegrate into mainstream society aligns strongly with the work done by our charitable arm, the Caridon Foundation.
The Foundation offers housing related support to vulnerable tenants and helps them to successfully manage their tenancies, improve money management and promote their independence. They are provided with support to remain in their properties for longer and to move onto long term housing.
The Foundation also links up with partner organisations to provide training on topics such as employability and CV drafting, budgeting advice and self-esteem building and to assist with, for example, access to clothes to attend job interviews.
In total, more than 92,000 people have sold The Big Issue since 1991 to help themselves work their way out of poverty – more than could fit into Wembley Stadium.
What inspires you about The Big Issue?
The Big Issue, like us, is focused on the larger issue of homelessness and it is therefore a natural choice for us to support.
We are inspired by The Big Issue’s tireless work to identify and motivate individuals and to help them move forward and deal with their homelessness and achieve their own goals.
Many of our properties are intended as stepping stones; they provide a temporary social housing solution to move people out of shared accommodation, or in many cases, away from homelessness. We look forward to sharing ideas with The Big Issue and to collaborate further on ways to tackle the housing crisis.
Who from your organisation would you put on the front cover of The Big Issue and why?
Christopher Membu, our portfolio manager, helps families in need and assists them with their issues as part of his management of temporary accommodations provided to councils. These are issues near to his heart. At age 17 he was asked to leave his home and had nowhere to go. After a very difficult period of his life, but with the help of various charities, he was able to pick himself up. His roles have always been linked to government, politics and housing needs. In his role at Caridon Property he continues to make a difference in social housing.
The Big Issue has inspired the launch of 120 street papers globally, including sister titles in Australia, South Africa, Japan, Taiwan and Korea.
In five years time, what one social issue would you like your organisation to have had an impact on?
We would like to continue to make an impact on homelessness. Caridon Property aims to continue to grow as a residential property business by monitoring and employing the latest trends, legislation and advances in development and social housing. As our business grows, we can make more social housing available to supply the UK’s growing need. Through our Foundation we provide life-changing initiatives to our more disadvantaged tenants, allowing them to play a fulfilling and rewarding role in society.
We will continue to collaborate with and support other institutions like The Big Issue who are also working to help those who struggle to secure accommodation, such as charities, non-governmental organisations, local and national government, architects, developers, landlords and other stakeholders.
Interested in a corporate subscription?
Find out more about how it works here and email Michael.firstname.lastname@example.org with