Join AIGA Colorado for our virtual Morning Brew Series! It is more important than ever to stay connected so join us for a short 30 minute presentation from industry professionals regarding the topics of health, the future of design, or community.
The Good Stuff...
While most print publications have struggled since the 2008 recession to keep people buying, the street paper is one of the few that has been consistently on the rise.
The growth of street paper popularity began in 2009, as the public had an incredible desire for offbeat news coverage and new vendor populations piled into street papers like never before as people looked to regain their footing on shaky economic ground. And despite growth in our economy over the last several years, the street paper model has continued to fill an incredibly important role in media here in Denver and around the world. It has also filled an important social role in breaking down the walls built by stigma to help individuals experiencing homelessness and/or poverty regain control of their lives through economic and educational empowerment tools.
The success of the street paper can be attributed to many factors: the right message at the right time, the simplicity of its design, the voice it gives to those voices that often go unheard, and a social exchange that doesn’t exist in other media forms in our modern world.
The Denver VOICE, Denver’s own street paper, has a rich history in our city. Since 1996, the local street paper has provided a voice and income opportunity for low-income individuals through its nonprofit newspaper. In 2007, the organization was revitalized as a more intentional jobs program; the paper continues to serve as a voice for the impoverished community, but with dedicated professional leadership, a journalism and program staff. Each year the organization employs between 100-120 individuals helping them to work their way back to self-sufficiency and take control of their lives.
As an unconventional job opportunity, it allows the individuals who sell the paper to set their own hours and function as their own boss, essentially providing them the means to start their own (very) small business. This occupational leverage is vital to these individuals, some of whom may not be able function in a normal work setting due to physical and/or mental obstacles and all of whom are tackling a variety of other challenges to regain enough stability to look for more traditional employment. In this way, they are able to earn the income needed to cover basic needs, such as purchasing food, qualifying for income-based housing, covering rent or a motel stay, paying medical bills, paying down debt, and more. But with the COVID-19 crisis the Denver VOICE has stopped print without the foot traffic and the customers that vendors depend on to be successful.
How is the Denver VOICE staying relevant during the COVID-19 crisis? In what ways has the crisis impacted the vendors, and how will they continue to be impacted as stay-at-home orders stretch and social distancing continues to be a way of life? In what ways has the health crisis highlighted the deep extent of the very barriers the street paper seeks to challenge? What is the future of this unique media avenue?
Join Jennifer Seybold, Executive Director of The Denver VOICE, as she helps us examine the impact of the public health crisis on this international industry for social good and homeless empowerment, and how street papers may be uniquely equipped for adaptability.
For This Event
We are asking for a suggested donation of $5.00 and will be donating 90% of the proceeds to our speakers and partners for Morning Brew. The remaining 10% will go to the AIGA Colorado Chapter to help with our overhead costs, future programming, and scholarships for students during this time.
This presentation will be recorded and sent to everyone who has registered in a recap email.
Videos and mics will be muted for all attendees throughout the call. If you have any questions, please add them in the Q & A in Zoom. We’ll stay on the call for about 10 minutes afterward to answer questions.
To keep the conversation going afterwards, please join our AIGA Colorado Slack Channel #morning-brew.
Jennifer, Executive Director of The Denver VOICE, has worked in the Denver area non-profit sector for more than a decade with organizations of all sizes doing strategic planning, fundraising, research, program building, and campaign management. Jennifer has a passion for serving traditionally marginalized populations and has helped many organizations find and implement solutions to overcome significant obstacles by developing multi-faceted partnerships that build strong, long-term support for causes and position organizations to truly make a difference.
Her passion, and the desire to do more in Denver’s homeless community, grew from personal reasons and expanded when she served for two years as the Executive Director of an Adams County Colorado shelter dedicated to empowering homeless individuals and families. As a Colorado native, Jennifer had heard of The Denver VOICE long before she took the position to lead the organization, and it’s the model of low-barrier, simple solution empowerment opportunity that she believes is the path to real success for our most at need communities.
Connect with Jennifer