Manchester set for INSPiring summit

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128 people from across the globe will arrive in Manchester next week, coming together for the annual INSP (International Network of Street Papers) Global Street Paper Summit.

The event, held in a different city each year, is organised by INSP, who work to support and develop street papers across the world, and is hosted by Big Issue North, the weekly street paper sold across the North of England by more than 250 vendors.

INSP supports 110 street papers, in 35 countries, all of whom use the same model as Big Issue North to offer ‘a hand-up, not a hand out’ to people facing homelessness and social exclusion.

At the summit, held at Bridgewater Hall, common issues, opportunities and challenges facing street papers will be discussed, and learning shared and taken back to all corners of the globe, from Brazil to Japan and Australia to Canada.

Keynotes speakers include: Richard Wilkinson, an internationally-renowned expert on the social determinants of health and the effects of income inequality on society; Neil McInroy, CEO of the Centre for Local Economic Strategies; and Michael Linnell, a leading authority on the rising use of synthetic drugs such as spice, and its impact on homeless communities.

The event will also see the INSP awards ceremony, which recognise the outstanding work of street papers, both in terms of their editorial content and the support they offer to street paper sellers. Categories include best news feature, best online presence and best vendor contribution.

Maree Aldam, Chief Executive of INSP said: “We are delighted to be in this vibrant city for the Global Street Paper Summit. We have worked with Big Issue North staff to create a programme of engaging discussions and keynotes to inspire the development of the street paper concept worldwide. Our event also has a local flavour; we’ll be offering our delegates a chance to explore the city and to learn about the Mancunian approach to homelessness, social innovation and community development.”

The summit also coincides with two major cultural events, highlighting the role of street papers in Manchester and beyond.

A unique exhibition celebrating the creativity and social impact of street papers worldwide will arrive in Manchester Town Hall on Monday (21 August).

The exhibition – UNCOVERED: still homeless, still an issue – will give audiences the opportunity to explore the outstanding design of street papers across the world, and the story behind the global street paper movement.

The free exhibition, created by INSP (International Network of Street Papers) in partnership with ideas agency Equator, will be open to the public from 21-29 August at in the town hall, opposite the Sculpture Hall Café.

And, on Thursday (24 August), singer-songwriter Frank Turner headline Street Noise – a night of music with a heart, held to raise funds for Big Issue North Trust and INSP (International Network of Street Papers).

One of the country’s most cherished songwriters, Turner has a legion of dedicated fans who will descend upon the O2 Manchester Ritz to see a solo set. All profits from the gig will go to Big Issue North Trust (charity number 1056041), the charity that supports Big Issue North magazine sellers, and INSP (charity number SC036369).

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