Support Megaphone Magazine, Vancouver’s Street Paper

Add a Comment by Rebecca Bollwitt

Megaphone Magazine, a street paper in Vancouver that reports on social justice, culture, politics, and arts, is hosting its spring fundraising campaign. The magazine, which features stories of underrepresented and marginalized communities, gives people experiencing housing or job insecurity an accessible way to earn an income.

Megaphone Spring Campaign

Did you know?
Megaphone is part of the International Network of Street Papers,
which has over 100 publications in 34 countries.

Megaphone provides low-barrier work opportunities through magazine writing, reporting, and vending. Each vendor buys the paper for 75 cents and sells it for $2 (plus tips). Megaphone is an autonomous way for those facing barriers to traditional employment to make an income.

Megaphone Magazine Collage
Some of my stories/columns in Megaphone, I have been a columnist since 2021

Last year, Megaphone launched an initiative called The Shift, which is dedicated to making its newsroom more inclusive by training aspiring journalists from the communities they serve. It’s part of a year-long project in partnership with the University of British Columbia Learning Exchange, that will also develop journalism best practices for reporting on marginalized communities.

The spring campaign will support Megaphone vendors, writers and peers facing poverty, inadequate housing, substance use and other marginalizing barriers. It will also support programs and opportunities such as creative writing workshops, and the annual Voices of the Street literary anthology.

Support Megaphone Magazine

At the centre of Megaphone’s heart is it’s vendor program. Cold-snaps and heat-domes, inclement weather, extreme heat and cold can make vending and production a tall task. Your donation today will help vendors throughout the year, help Megaphone provide them with necessary wellness supplies and proper vendor equipment, as well as other accessible forms of income generation.

If you’ve followed Megaphone for a while, you’re probably familiar with Peter Thompson, who sells at 4th and Vine in Vancouver. We asked Peter, who’s been with Megaphone since 2007, how the weather has impacted sales. He had this to say:

“I used to go out for hours at a time, not always to make money but to see all the familiar faces. When the weather gets severe, there’s no shade, I have to cut it short. I’ve got bad arthritis, and it flares in the cold. Sometimes the busses don’t run and I can’t leave my house.”

All of this within the past 5 years, he says.

Through it’s Spring Campaign Megaphone is adapting and trying to support vendors through these sudden and unpredictable climate-crisis related weather changes. Donating to Megaphone’s Spring Campaign will help accomplish that.

  • $35 covers the cost of writing supplies for Megaphone participants
  • $40 pays for sun-protection equipment for one vendor
  • $70 pays for a new Megaphone coat for one vendor
  • $100 pays for missed sales due to weather for two vendors
  • $100 supports one Megaphone storyteller to copy edit Megaphone magazine before it goes to press 
  • $250 pays for a vendor to facilitate a workshop and pay attendees in lieu of sales
  • $250 pays three Megaphone writers for their contributions of poetry and prose to Megaphone publications
  • $350 covers half the cost of running a monthly peer-editorial board meeting with 10-15 Megaphone storytellers  
  • $500 goes towards a rainy-day fund to supply vendors with transportation during inclement weather
  • Donate today!

Your support will go a long way! Hope in Shadows is a charitable organization creating positive social change for people and communities impacted by poverty and marginalization. Their projects empower, educate, and provide training to low-income people in Vancouver’s Downtown Eastside and beyond. Hope in Shadows’ flagship project is the annual Hope in  Shadows photography contest and calendar. Hope in Shadows also works with Megaphone Magazine to do this charitable work.

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