Pupils take over The Big Issue


The Big Issue and Social Enterprise Academy partnered to produce the special edition of the magazine, created by school pupils

20th March 2019 by Gareth Jones 0 Comments

Enterprising school children have been showcasing their skills to create social change.

This week, pupils from Mary Russell School in Paisley took part in a sell off of a special edition of The Big Issue magazine, that some of them took part in creating.

Five children from the school became Big Issue vendors for the day and tried their hand at selling the magazine at Renfrewshire House in Paisley.

They are just one of 14 schools across Scotland who are selling a special edition of The Big Issue magazine, which is out this week.

The Big Issue and Social Enterprise Academy partnered to produce the special edition of the magazine, holding a creative session with 15 pupils aged nine to 16 from four schools at the magazine’s editorial headquarters. The result was a special, social enterprise inspired supplement, running in all copies of the Scottish edition, with additional copies being sold by children in 14 schools across Scotland throughout the week.

The academy, founded in 2007, run the Social Enterprise Schools programme, which gives students a hands-on experience in running a business with a social purpose. It has now supported more than 1,000 schools across Scotland to set up pupil-led social enterprises.

Lewis Fudge, a pupil at Mary Russell School, said: “It’s been really fun trying to sell the magazine to people. It’s probably been my favourite part – closing the deal and getting money so we can keep our breakfast club going at school.”

Paul McNamee, editor of The Big Issue, said: “It’s been really special to see the pupils from Mary Russell selling the magazine. It takes guts, persistence and sales techniques to sell The Big Issue - all of the pupils here today in Paisley have that.

“I’ve watched them work the lines, making sure they can sell all their magazines. It’s a wonderful thing to witness and I hope they’ve had fun and feel that the skills they’ve learned with us at The Big Issue can be applied somewhere else in the future.”

Neil McLean, chief executive of the Social Enterprise Academy, said: “Mary Russell School are a perfect example of the innovative pupils involved in our Social Enterprise Schools programme. They’ve done a fantastic job today in Paisley selling the magazine and we want to make sure every school in the country has the same opportunity to learn entrepreneurship by doing good in their community.

“I really hope that readers take away just how much of an asset these young people are to their communities. They are doing amazing work running social enterprises to tackle the issues they care about - this genuinely is pupil-led!”