The Big Issue has begun a partnership with Boogaloo Radio in London enabling Big Issue vendors to take to the airwaves.
Boogaloo, based in Highgate, is a 24-hr online radio station transmitting worldwide that has been running since 2018. ‘The Big Issue Takeover’ show features a different vendor every week playing and talking about their favourite music from 10am to 12pm every Tuesday. The show is broadcast live from the former bin shed, in the beer garden of the The Boogaloo Pub.
Matt Campbell, who sells the magazine outside the Tesco on Kennington Lane, kicked off with the first show of the year just yesterday. He told The Big Issue: “I loved it, it made me feel like I was someone”. Matt’s soul and funk playlist included the likes of George Benson, Stevie Wonder and Lionel Ritchie. He also told the Big Issue: “I love radio because it doesn’t cost anything. I spent the whole day before my show listening to radio stations at home and it felt like I was spending the day with other people”.
As well as educating listeners about The Big Issue it also creates opportunities for The Big Issue Foundation service brokers to spend time with the vendors, putting together playlists and discussing any subjects they may like to mention on air.
Norma Jean Taylor, 63, who began selling the Big Issue more than 10 years ago, played her first radio set at the Boogaloo last month.
She said: “Without music you can’t develop life. It’s a big part in life – music and songs. The playlist can help clear your mind and keep you going. “When I came in today I was more lively than usual. I enjoy it very much. I would love to have another go soon.”