Cornel, Sainsbury’s, Cottingham

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Tell us a bit about yourself.
I am 60 years old and I am Romanian. I have sold Big Issue North since 2013, and my pitch is in a village near Hull.  

Why do you sell the magazine?
I am selling it to help my family. I have five children and eight grandchildren. I like to help my grandchildren and I want them to be happy. That is why I do everything I can for them.

Do you like selling it?
Yes. I like selling Big Issue North because it gives me an opportunity and helps me to have something to do every day. It gives me a purpose in life – like a target to achieve every day. To help my family while I’m still able to is worth every moment spent. 

What is Hull like as a place?
Hull is a very nice place to live and visit. I really like this town. I am happy here.

Tell us about your family.
Most of my children live in Romania. I only have one son with me here in the UK. His name is Florin and he also sells Big Issue North and he lives with us at home. He is a good son and is very hard working. 

What are your hopes for the future?
I don’t have big plans for the future except to be healthy as much as possible and work in this country until I am 90 – ha ha! – and then live another 10 years back in Romania with my family.

What makes you happy?
When I am home and have time with my wife and my son and when I call my grandchildren in Romania and most of all when I see them. 

What makes you sad?
To be honest nothing makes me sad. I am very optimistic and try to think positively. I just want to be happy, drink a glass of wine and not get sad.

What do you do in your spare time?
We sometimes go for a walk around town and that is very relaxing. We also watch TV programmes for news. 

Do you have a message for your customers?
I really want to thank to all my customers for supporting me and being part of my aim to help my family. I really can’t thank you enough. And also thank you to the Sainsbury’s manager and staff who take care of me and bring me tea and coffee when I am there. Thank you for your kindness and understanding. I wish you all what’s best for you in your life.

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