Published: April 22, 2020
UNITY Trust Bank has pledged to help the Big Issue after the magazine issued an urgent appeal for support during the coronavirus crisis.
The commercial bank with a social conscience has purchased a three-month subscription for each of its 110-strong workforce to help support the publication during these difficult times.
The Big Issue is a social enterprise and was established 29 years ago to help people lift themselves out of poverty.
Around 1,500 vendors usually sell the award-winning magazine, working as micro-entrepreneurs buying copies for £1.25 and selling them for £3.
However, Government guidelines to stay at home and observe social distancing means vendors – many of whom are vulnerable and homeless – can’t earn a living.
The Big Issue is now trying to support its vendors by encouraging people to subscribe – with 50 per cent of net proceeds going to sellers.
Margaret Willis, CEO at Unity Trust Bank, said: “These are unprecedented times and now more than ever we must support each other.
“Through these subscriptions we not only support those most in need but also help colleagues to recognise and respond to some of the more difficult social challenges we face today.”
Lara McCullagh, Executive Director at The Big Issue Group, said: “We would like to say a big thank you to all at Unity Trust Bank for their support.
“By subscribing to The Big Issue magazine for three months they have not only provided their staff with a great source of uplifting content, but more importantly they have helped to ensure that we can continue to be there for Big Issue sellers during this crisis.
“Their support will enable us to make a meaningful difference in the lives of the vulnerable people who rely on selling the magazine to make a living – both now and in the future.”
Unity Trust Bank’s vision is to help create a better society by working with a range of organisations that share its values.
It aligns its operations and practices to the UN’s Sustainable Development Goals – a globally recognised framework for achieving a better and more sustainable future – which includes working to end hunger and poverty.
The Big Issue was founded in 1991 to dismantle poverty by creating opportunities through self-help, social trading and business solutions.
Founders John Bird and Gordon Roddick believed that the key to solving the problem of homelessness lay in helping people to help themselves.
How you can help
Readers, new and old, can buy a subscription of the Big Issue – £32.50 for three months – or make a one-off contribution at www.bigissue.com
For the first time the Big Issue magazine is also on newsstands at Sainsburys, McColls and Co-op stores, priced £3.