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‘We Live Here, Auténtico!’ wraps its inaugural podcast season

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Carol Lara
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Gabriela Ramirez-Arellano and Alejandro Santiago are co-hosts of ‘We Live Here Auténtico!’

In 2022, STLPR launched a new season of its We Live Here podcast, a series exploring stories about race and class in our region, by partnering with Auténtico!, a podcast created by Latinx professionals.

Over 13 episodes, We Live Here, Auténtico! offers story-based reflections from bilingual Latinos from St. Louis and the Metro East — small business owners and everyday people working toward racial equity and opportunity in the metro region — with hosts Gabriela Ramirez-Arellano and Alejandro Santiago Ortega.

From 2000 to 2010, census results show the percentage of Latinos in the 14-county St. Louis region roughly doubled. Most of the growth in the past 20 years has come in Madison, St. Clair, St. Charles and St. Louis counties and St. Louis, where Latino residents now account for more than 5% of the city’s population.

Beyond Demographics

The entire “We Live Here” podcast allows listeners to peer behind the demographic numbers to meet their neighbors and share their stories.

“2022 was an exceptional year for STLPR with the investment in content and engagement efforts to and by Latinx professionals.” said Jade Harrell, STLPR’s director of on-demand and content partnerships. “We partnered with the Auténtico! podcast, hosted by Gabriela Ramírez-Arellano and Alejandro Santiago, and through story, content and community events were able to highlight and celebrate the diversity of Latino voices in St. Louis.”

Check out the final three episodes of the season and don’t miss the full series, available wherever you get podcasts or on stlpr.org.

 Episode 11: Ben Molina | Bolivian born...made in STL

Ben Molina
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Carol Lara Photography
Ben Molina

Ben Molina is passionate about elder care. His work at the Alzheimer’s Association is making a difference in the Latino community, and in St. Louis City where he’s lived for the last 8 years.

In this episode of We Live Here, Auténtico!, Molina opens up about his personal journey with depression, finding love, and his calling for his life’s work advocating for Alzheimer's patients. He discusses the challenges of a disease that disproportionately affects Latinos and offers advice on the conversations and planning every family needs to have.

Read & listen

Episode 12: The Hispanic Chamber | Community and connection central

From the Latino Festival in O’Fallon, the Hispanic Festival in Florissant, dance clubs in midtown, and new eateries representing a diaspora of Latin cuisine, St. Louis’ Latino culture is booming and a vibrant reflection of a growing Latino population.

For 40 years, the Hispanic Chamber of Commerce of Metropolitan St. Louis has been at the center of that growth and expansion. In this episode of We Live Here, Auténtico!, meet Chamber members and explore how this organization has been a vital connection point as one of the oldest Latino-led organizations in St. Louis.

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Episode 13: Ricardo Martinez | DACA dreams realized

Ricardo Martinez
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Ricardo Martinez
Ricardo Martinez

Ricardo Martinez came to the United States when he was five years old and spent most of his life in central Illinois. He describes himself as a “mid-Midwesterner.” But he didn’t know as a child how different he was. Martinez’s parents applied for DACA on his behalf, to provide him and his siblings temporary, renewable permission to be in the United States, even though they lacked documentation of their own.

On this We Live Here, Auténtico!, Martinez shares how DACA allowed him to pursue his passion for finance. The show follows his entrepreneurial journey to found two businesses aimed at helping Spanish speakers understand the American personal finance system, and his love for St. Louis.

Read & listen

Hear more stories from your neighbors in We live Here at welivehere.show or via podcast.

As the Communications Specialist for St. Louis Public Radio, Fontella gets to showcase the award-winning local reporting, original programming and community engagement that make STLPR a beloved regional institution.

Send questions and comments about this story to feedback@stlpublicradio.org.