Cameron's act of Valentine's kindness

16 February 2018 The Big Idea

Cameron's act of Valentine's kindness

This Valentine's Day, Gold Coast vendor Cameron (pictured above) was at the heart of one of the most talked about love stories.

It began with Cameron's chance encounter with Lance Smith who, after being charmed by Cameron's smile and "Have a great day!", sat down to learn more about his Big Issue vendor.

Cameron spoke to Lance about losing his dad, his experience with mental illness and his time sleeping rough. He said the connections he's make through The Big Issue in a few short months of being a vendor have changed his life. "He feels like he has purpose, and genuinely enjoys getting up in the morning to go sell it," Lance says.

Then Cameron shared his plan for Valentine's Day – to give away $100 of roses for free just to "see the joy and smile on people's faces".

Moved by Cameron's kindness, Lance chipped in for half of Cameron's 100 roses and posted a story about this "beautiful human with a massive heart" on Facebook.

Overnight it was shared tens of thousands of times.

When Cameron arrived at his pitch (where he sells The Big Issue) on Valentine's Day, he was met by reporters and crowds of people who wanted to buy a magazine and receive a rose.

"I was nervous with the news cameras and I was shaking a little bit. But I was loving it and I was on a high," Cameron says. "I loved doing it… it's the best idea I've ever had!"

While the internet sensation might have died down since Valentine's Day, Cameron has captured the hearts of people from the Gold Coast and says the experience was life changing.

"I've made five new friends… the Gold Coast locals are really friendly," Cameron says. "I'm loving life at the moment… I'm so happy."

As for the future, Cameron wants to keep on spreading goodwill.

"I want to help others," he says. "I've been through a lot with mental illness and being homeless and I want to help people who are struggling with the same thing. I'd like to be their friend.

"But I'm happy selling The Big Issue, I love this job."

Since Cameron's story went viral, many people have asked how they can support him. The best way to help Cameron and other Big Issue vendors it to purchase a magazine - vendors make 100 per cent profit on each sale!

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