Hola, everyone. Welcome to Alma Latina Online Magazine, a bilingual (English/Spanish) online publication with a mandate since our inception in March, 2012 to serve Spanish-speaking Durham Region residents and non-Spanish speakers who love Hispanic culture. It is our intention to be a bridge between Hispanics who live east of the city, and to highlight Durham Region as a destination to live, work and play, hoping to bring you information on everything this wonderful part of the GTA has to offer. At the same time we want to highlight elements of our heritage (language, music, food, arts, etc) to the thousands of non-Spanish speakers who love Hispanic culture and all the greatness it has to offer and who constantly express an eagerness and a desire to learn more about it.
This effort has been a labour of love from day one, born out of a desire to inform and serve the two communities that we are so intrinsically connected to: the Hispanic community, our wonderfully rich and diverse culture we were so blessed to be born into and so fiercely proud to be a member of, and the Canadian community, the country that welcomed us, embraced us and encouraged us to be who we are— such an open and warm community that instead of forcing us to deny and renounce our roots and identity is forever urging us to maintain our uniqueness while at the same time forging a sense of belonging into this society.
As we said on our first anniversary, Alma Latina or “Latin Soul”, its literal translation, has sought to be more than an advertising vehicle in the vast landscape that is the Canadian media: instead we constantly strive to be a place where both Hispanics and non-Hispanics can find top quality, well-researched, informative and timely original content in both English and Spanish.
Hola a todos! Bienvenidos a Alma Latina Online Magazine, una revista virtual bilingüe (Inglés/Español) con un mandato desde nuestra incursión como medio alternative de servir a la comunidad Hispano-parlante en la Región de Durham y a todas aquellas personas que no hablan Español pero que aman a nuestra cultura Hispana. Es nuestra intención servir como un puente entre los Hispanos que viven al este de la ciudad y a la vez destacar a la Región de Durham como un lugar para vivir, trabajar y disfrutar sanamente, siempre buscando proveerles con información de todo lo que ocurre en esta parte tan maravillosa de la GTA (Greater Toronto Area). Al mismo tiempo queremos destacar también los elementos de nuestra cultura Hispana (el idioma, la música, nuestra comida, arte, etc) para aquellos millares de gente de habla inglesa que aman nuestra cultura y la grandeza de todo lo que ofrece, y quienes constantemente expresan su deseo de aprender mucho más de ella.
Este esfuerzo ha sido una tarea realizada con mucho amor desde nuestros inicios, nacida de nuestro deseo puro de informar y servir a las dos comunidades que nos unen de manera tan esencial: nuestra comunidad Hispana, esta cultura tan rica y diversa en la que nos sentimos tan bendecidos y orgullosos por ser parte de ella y la comunidad Canadiense, el país que nos abrió sus puertas de par en par y nos ha acogido tan gentilmente, animándonos siempre a mantener nuestra originalidad: una comunidad tan hospitalaria que en vez de hacernos renunciar a nuestras raíces e identidad nos urge a conservar nuestra naturaleza única, y al mismo tiempo forjando día a día un sentido de pertenencia en la sociedad canadiense.
Como escribimos en aquel nuestro primer aniversario, Alma Latina ha buscado ser más que un vehículo de publicidad en el vasto panorama de los medios de comunicación canadienses: en lugar de eso, nos hemos esforzado desde el primer día en ser un lugar en el que los Hispano-canadiense y los Anglo-parlantes pueden encontrar contenido original de la más alta calidad, bien investigados, con mucha información en ambas lenguas.
Who We Are // Quienes Somos:
Alma Sandoval Betancourth — Founder/Publisher: I have a BA in Political Science/Communications from York University and also an Advanced Journalism Diploma from Humber College. I’m currently completing a Business Management certificate through Ryerson University. Our family (Husband Alex and two sons: Alex Fabián, 19, and Jalen Gabriel, 13) has resided in Pickering, Ontario, since 2003.
I’m a Nicaraguan/Canadian journalist with over two decades of experience. I have written mostly about people and events that pertain to the Hispanic community in Canada. I have interviewed many famous musicians and many budding artists as well, all of whom have one thing in common: their lives and their passions are worth writing (and reading) about. Like Oprah always says, everybody has a story, and I have had the luck and privilege of having been granted access to so many of them. Hearing their stories and peeking through the windows of their souls has been inspirational and educational, not only for me, but (hopefully) for all those who’ve read my articles. On Alma Latina, I have written about many areas of interest, always hoping to inform and entertain you, the readers, and to also showcase the many articles I have written throughout the years that I have worked as a Freelance Writer and photographer for various publications, both in Spanish and English.
Alex Sandoval — Photographer: Photographer with Alma Latina Online Magazine since March 2012. When not volunteering (or being volun-told, really) his photography skills, Alex is hard at work on his day job: Real Estate Agent with HomeLife Landmark Realty Inc., Brokerage, serving the Hispanic and Anglo communities in Durham Region and the GTA in both English and Spanish with all their real estate needs. Check out more of Alex wearing his Realtor hat at: www.AlexSandoval.ca. In his spare time Alex has coached his son’s soccer team in the past, is an avid golfer and a loyal Blue Jays and Raptors fan. He is a die-hard old salsa fan, and dreams of one day seeing his idol, Rubén Blades, in concert. You can also find him jamming on his guitar to the YouTube School of Music on any given weekend.
Gabriela Argueta — Journalism Program, Humber College: My name is Gabriela Argueta. I am 18 years old and I am a first year student in the Journalism program at Humber College. I enjoy reading, eating sushi, and listening to hip hop music. I am half Colombian half Salvadorian and speak Spanish as a second language. From a young age, I enjoyed listening to music and learning all the history behind it. My dream is to become an entertainment reporter so that I can be able to interview and get to know music artists. Getting to know artists will also lead to getting to know the art in their work, which is something I take great interest in. Working with Alma Latina Magazine will definitely give me the experience I need. I look forward to building on my skills and opportunities throughout this amazing journey.
Maria I. Tuckler — Photographer: Maria has been a high school teacher for many years. She currently teaches English & Co-op in Scarborough. It’s a career she loves because it gives her the chance to be surrounded by the energy and enthusiasm of her students and to be able to shape their young minds in a positive way. But Maria’s passion has always been photography— and she’s an incredibly talented photographer with an exceptionally keen eye for detail and form. Both her day job as a teacher and her many years working (and always learning) as a photographer have allowed her to travel the world (summer trips through Europe, Asia and Latin America every year…she’s a lucky, lucky woman!) and capture the beauty and unique elements of the most remote hidden corners of the world. You can find a lot of Maria’s extensive body of work on her Flickr page “Girl Travel” or on her Instagram feed TravelMT40.
Alex Fabián Sandoval — Contributor: Alex Fabián is currently in his second year of a Music Composition degree at the University of Toronto’s Faculty of Music. He has been composing his unique (videogame “Zelda”—inspired) style of music since he was a young child. You can actually hear Alex when he practices his university-assigned pieces, he’ll start with Mozart and end the song with the Super Mario theme. He hopes and is working towards becoming a film or video-game music composer in the future. Alex is also an avid Vine /Insta-video maker, and he has garnered hundreds of followers who look forward to watching his creative and funny videos. Alex is also a very well-rounded young man who worked as a Summer Camp Counsellor all through high school and has worked as a swimming instructor/lifeguard through high school/university. And because of his enthusiastic and super friendly personality, he has been offered a position to work as a U of T Faculty of Music Event Ambassador.