Mary recently joined with the ACT Minister for Community Services, Ms Joy Burch MLA, in celebrating the 15th birthday of The Big Issue.
As many would know, The Big Issue is a fortnightly publication discussing current affairs in Australia and abroad. The Big Issue also provides an innovative approach to addressing the problem of homelessness.
From its beginnings as a small publication available only in Melbourne, the Big Issue is now sold throughout Australia and has a fortnightly circulation above 30,000.
The Big Issue provides an opportunity for those in the community who are disadvantaged to earn money while at the same time connecting with members of the public. Vendors of The Big Issue have reported increased self-confidence and self-worth, improved health and a decreased incidence of homelessness.
“It is really good to see an idea grow into such a successful example of we best help ourselves by helping others,” Mary commented.
Mary spoke to many of the vendors of The Big Issue about their experience selling the publication and the benefits it has had for them.
“While it is easy to see the benefits for those selling the publication, it should also be remembered that the general public also gains from the work of The Big Issue by getting to know someone they otherwise would not.
“I wish everyone involved in The Big Issue the best of luck in the future,” Mary concluded.