While they won't be getting much of a white Christmas, readers of The Big Issue Australia were celebrating 'Sunshine and Santa' with the paper's annual ‘Big Wish You’ issue.
Vendors across Australia offered up reflections and words of wisdom on the year that was, and wishes for the celebrations ahead. The Big Issue Australia supports 400 vendors who sell a combined 33,000 copies per edition.
In true festive style, StreetWise designed their front cover as a present to illustrate their gift guide for the Christmas period which promotes locally crafted items. 200 vendors sell the weekly publication to around 8000 readers in Chicago.
Other papers like Dutch Straatjournaal and Novy Prostor in Czech Republic opted for traditional Christmas imagery including trees and angels. The Dutch paper enjoys a circulation of 1200 per edition, sold by its 70 vendors. Novy Prostor’s 187 vendors sell the fortnightly paper to around 16,000 readers.
We were also happy to see a certain Paulo Coelho grace the Christmas editions of several papers – including our German colleagues Draussenseiter and Bodo – to celebrate the fantastic Christmas story he kindly donated to INSP members. Bodo’s 100 vendors sell around 1200 copies per edition while 30 Draussenseiter vendors sell 3000.
In Denmark, Hus Forbi’s edition features a vendor wearing a Santa hat and is sold by its 800 vendors who average a combined 75,000 copies per edition.
In the Netherlands the Straatnieuws cover aims this Christmas mas to help their vendors to make new friends on their pitch. Santa helps out and puts his (Facebook) thumb up for this. Friendship is the editorial focus of this issue.
The cover of Café Jerusalem (Neumünster, Germany) features Alfred, a homeless man in Paris dressed up as Santa Claus.
Strassenfeger (Berlin, Germany) ran two Christmas covers this year titled 'Rituale' and 'Wunderbar'.
In Canada Megaphone reflects on the true meaning of Christmas, with pieces from vendors about what the holidays means to them.
The Christmas edition of Surprise (Switzerland) features many short stories including the donated story by Paulo Coelho.
In France, the street paper Macadam featured popular French retro comedy duo Shirley and Dino on their front cover, while the cover of Ocas belongs to Denise Fraga, a Brazilian actress who is starring in a play about a homeless woman who befriends a housewife. Macadam’s 50 vendors sell 8000 copies of the magazine per edition and Ocas enjoys a circulation of 7500, sold by its 30-strong vendor team.
But in many parts of the world, children won't be waking up to a mountain of presents. The Big Issue Malawi closed out the year by highlighting the plight of Malawi’s underprivileged children in a series of articles.
46% of Malawi’s population is under the age of 15 and 13% (roughly 2 million) have lost one or both parents and are forced to live in poverty. Like some people who our street papers support, many of them will spend Christmas on the streets. Published every two months, The Big Issue Malawi is sold by 30 vendors with a circulation of 1000 per edition.