Thrive Detroit Street Paper

The Difference

“The difference between being one penny behind and one penny ahead is profound. If you’re one penny behind, then every day you fall further back. Every day, the emergencies get worse, the stress gets worse, your ability to survive (never mind thrive) gets worse. If you’re one penny ahead, though, just a penny, then every day you build a reserve, every day you are able to invest in productivity or peace of mind, and soon you are two pennies or a dollar or five dollars a day ahead. And then you can send your daughter to college. And then you can buy something from the merchant next door. And then you can plant a better crop. And then you have a stake in the community, and then the world changes.”                                                                                                                                                                                     -Seth Godin


Thrive Detroit Street Newspaper is a social enterprise of Thrive Detroit, L3C,  founded in 2011. 

Street Newspapers are a popular successful business model for providing income to the homeless and vulnerably housed.

First published in November 2011, Thrive Detroit is Detroit’s first and only street paper. The paper was launched through a Kiva Detroit micro-loan and a gift from 1Matters.

As an initial investment, Thrive Detroit Street Paper provides Vendors/Micro-preneurs with an initial batch of papers (up to 10 issues) at no charge.   They are then able to sell the issues for $1 each and reinvest some or all of the funds back into their enterprise by purchasing additional papers (stock) for .25 each.

Those who choose to become regular Vendors/Micro-preneurs purchase the paper for .25 each, sell them for $1 each, and retain .75 for themselves.

A micro-enterprise can be the difference between an individual or family remaining housed or becoming homeless.   Individuals already facing homelessness, can use funds to secure housing.

Selling just 30 issues a day, 6 days a week will gross $720 a month, netting $540 a month in income if the Micro-preneur decides to stop at 30 issues a day.  But they don’t have to!  They can take a portion of their earnings each day to reinvest in purchasing more issues at .25.  There is no limit.

Vendors/Micro-preneurs can also generate income through advertising revenues. They receive 30% of the revenue from each Ad sold directly or as a result of a formal referral.

Vendors/Micro-preneurs who purchase and sell at least 100 issues over time will be provided with identifying vests and ID badges to increase visibility and sales.

Thrive Detroit provides training opportunities through money management/budgeting, sales, and writing workshops for those who want to participate.

Support Thrive Detroit by:  

  • Purchasing the publication each month from either a Vendor, Source Booksellers, one of our local business supporters such as the D:hive, or subscribing online to have it delivered via USPS or to your email-box.  
  • Giving a one time or regular donation(s) to help cover the cost of  initial investments, and other costs associated with providing this opportunity.

Donations and gifts to Thrive Detroit L3C are not tax-deductible.