Helping the homeless regain initiative in their life!
Enterprise/business philosophy and objectives of the founder
The Big Issue is a magazine that was founded in London. Founder John Bird hoped that through publishing a magazine, all homeless or socially vulnerable people who were willing to work could be given a self-employment opportunity. By selling the magazine, their personal confidence and dignity can be restored, and they can regain initiative in their life.
History of development/business model
The Big Issue has been in circulation for over 20 years since its founding in 1991. It covers current affairs, social issues and arts and cultural information, and is currently distributed in different editions in ten countries, including in the UK, Japan, Australia and South Korea. The editor-in-chief of the Taiwan version, Fines Lee, received authorisation in 2009, and started publication on April 1, 2010.
The Big Issue operates primarily as a corporation. Producing magazines and then distributing them to street peddlers, it extends the spirit of the UK headquarters, helping secure the livelihoods of the homeless by allowing them to regain control of their lives. In the beginning, it was only sold at 18 metro stations in the Greater Taipei area. Today, Taiwan has more than 97 outlets, and tens of thousands of copies of each edition are issued, with the magazine already spreading to almost every metro station in the Greater Taipei area.
Creating social value/mitigating social problems
The Big Issue magazines are made up of balanced global news coverage from independent journalists. At the same time, they help homeless people rely on their own strength to return to their life in society and regain their dignity, as well as change the public’s impression of people who live on the street. In addition, during the course of business, courses in sales are arranged for homeless people, so they can take up their work responsibility and carry their lives forward.
886-2 2332 9974
No.28, Sec. 1, Bade Rd., Zhongzheng Dist., Taipei City 100, Taiwan (R.O.C.)