“I have been around the markets for as long as I can remember, my mother worked on the markets and took/dragged me along with her, she worked on various markets across London starting in The Electric Ballroom in Camden every Sunday and The Stables Market throughout the ’80s and early ’90s. As I inadvertently shadowed my mum across these markets I was eventually drawn to the buzz of the market. I also took note as I got older that the market was a viable way of earning a living and one of the best platforms to build a business from scratch. During my mid-twenties I started to work in various provisions across the youth and social services sector. I then returned, in 2017, to working on the markets and combined my experience of markets and my passion for working with people, launching Out Little Markets as a way to firstly make money and secondly to engage people with experiences of homelessness, offending and/or unemployment with viable employment opportunities on the market.”
I run a market trading initiative called Our Little Markets. Our Little Markets trades in fruit and vegetables and women’s clothes and utilises the expertise of vulnerable and marginalised people who assist with sales, stock selection, customer services and marketing. People working on the stall do not need a formal interview or any prior experience. People give their time and in return receive mentoring and are developed and supported to gain skills and experience over a 12 week period, which can be extended. During this time they are networked with other services and supported to identify and work towards their personal goals. We work with all ages and generations and aim to tackle, in small ways social issues such loneliness, isolation, youth crime and unemployment. The future direction of the business is in Fruit and Veg Boxes, these various themed boxes will be delivered to customers and can be sent as gifts. There is potential to develop a community donations stall which will encourage people from the local community and big businesses to donate high quality clothing which can then be taken by people in most in need in the area. Our Little Markets will link in with fashion colleges and offer a platform for budding designers to showcase their work. Our Little Markets runs vibrant and colourful stalls that support the community.