Big Issue trainees at work
Hands-on journalism training

Poached Creative and The Big Issue magazine offered an online journalism programme in London and the South West for trainees from varied backgrounds with an interest in either writing or photography.

Martin Kitara
Now working as a communications manager
Mat Amp
Now working as a deputy editor

Online journalism

The Big Issue Online Journalism programme was a ground-breaking six-week programme of training and practical experience for homeless and marginalised people.

We seek motivated people who are keen to learn some new skills and to make positive changes in their lives. The training covers subjects from news and feature writing to media law and social media, as well as visual communication and photography.

“I'm stepping back into the right zone of getting back to work. Freelancing is difficult. This is good for networking, getting back with people, seeing how different people work and getting good feelings about yourself.” Chris

Trainees for the programme are taken through an application and interview process to ensure they have the interest and aptitude needed to succeed in online journalism, and will work with journalism and media professionals to produce and publish stories and photographs on the Big Issue Online Journalist blog. The trainees will also benefit from the expertise of visiting journalists, photographers and social media practitioners, including Pulitzer-prize nominated Veronique Mistaen.

“I found the training very useful in terms of sharpening my skills and improving my confidence again in terms of writing” Danielle

Trainees have gone on to paid work for The Big Issue and Poached Creative, launch freelance careers and businesses and taken up further education in journalism. Read some of our trainee stories.

Big Issue Online Journalists - Dorset

The first Big Issue Online Journalists programme to run outside of London took place in Poole, Dorset in May and June 2015. Seven trainees completed the course and exhibited their work at Poole Central Library. Trainees have so far been published in the Dorset Eye, the Alt Entertainer and on the Big Issue blog and one trainee is holding his first solo art exhibition at Art Works, Poole Quay as a result of contacts he made on the course. Find out more on our news page.

Find out more

The six-week programme was supported by The Evening Standard’s Dispossed Fund and The Big Lottery Fund was a chance to amplify the voices of marginalised people through online media. 

For more information email