09 Dec 2016

RMCG celebrates The Big Issue success story

RMCG congratulates The Big Issue on its 20-year anniversary of providing support to disadvantaged Australians through its Street Magazine Enterprise.

The Street Magazine Enterprise provides disadvantaged and homeless people with the opportunity to sell copies of The Big Issue magazine in Australia’s major cities. The program has been very successful over the last twenty years, with more than 10 million magazines sold. There are now 580 street vendors across Australia.

RMCG recently completed a formal assessment of the program under the rigorous terms of the Social Return on Investment (SROI) framework.  SROI outlines and quantifies the social, as well as the financial outcomes of programs.

The recent assessment reports that for every $1.00 invested in the program, $5.50 is returned to society. This is achieved by reducing the demand of the street vendors for high cost social services such as hospital admissions, police and court time and emergency shelter accommodation.

For vendors, selling The Big Issue can also provide immeasurable personal benefits:

“I had my spot on George Street for many years which is where I met my wife who was a customer. We’ve been married for four years. It’s turned my life around. Overall it’s been a great benefit to me, I’m really pleased.” (Vendor N – Sydney)

RMCG Principal Matthew Toulmin was the project manager for the SROI assessment:

“RMCG is pleased to have been involved in this project. We have had a long-standing association of providing pro bono independent advice to The Big Issue, and we look forward to continuing our relationship into the future”, Matthew said.

Please click here for a summary of the results of the SROI assessment, or for more information on this project, please contact