Below are a few samples of our radio stories: 

 

Witnessing Venezuela from Afar | NPR's Latino USA

In the last two decades, an estimated two million Venezuelans have left their country, driven by economic and political insecurity. Journalist Ruxandra Guidi was among them. She tells the story of what it feels like to have witnessed her country’s revolution —to have almost been swept by its rhetoric— and, as she sees it, to watch all unravel now from afar.

Listen to the radio essay here.

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What Life Is Like in Two Chinatown Buildings | KCRW

For around 3,000 seniors, Los Angeles' Chinatown is home. From one-family cottages to single room occupancy buildings and new apartment towers: The majority of residents are renters, with one of the lowest median income levels in the city–$18,657 a year. Whether they’re living in a rundown SRO or a newly redeveloped tower, there aren’t many good choices in Chinatown for seniors looking for affordable housing.

Listen to the documentary here. This story is the second installment of our ongoing Going Gray in LA series, made possible by The Eisner Foundation and KCRW.

 

Patty's Story | KCRW's Press Play

Life as a senior in Los Angeles can be precarious and isolating –especially when moving around is difficult and when the money is tight. Seventy year-old Patty Balbaneda has struggled with all of it for years, but is finding her sense of purpose at the local senior center.

Listen to the documentary here. This story is the second installment of our ongoing Going Gray in LA series, made possible by The Eisner Foundation and KCRW.

 
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My Dad and Me, in Three Songs | Scene on Radio

It can take a lifetime to make sense of a parent, or to get over him. Or, just maybe, to come to terms. By Ruxandra Guidi for the Scene on Radio podcast.

Listen to the documentary here.

 

 
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Preserving the Quito Rocket Frog from Volcanic Destruction | Deutsche Welle

The Quito rocket frog, once thought to be extinct, hangs on to survival in a patch of forest beneath an active volcano. As Cotopaxi threatens to erupt, three scientists set out to rescue the tiny amphibian from oblivion.

Listen to the radio feature here.

 
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As Pope Francis Visits Ecuador, Women There Say They're Losing Ground | PRI's The World

Correa is known outside Ecuador for his investment in social programs and infrastructure. But many of his critics argue that his policies toward women are among the most conservative in Latin America. Women’s groups in Ecuador say they’ve been losing a series of hard-won rights since Correa first came into office in 2007.

Listen to the radio feature here.

 

The Salvadoran Town Where Migrants Are Hotly Debated Folk Heroes | PRI's The World

Intipucá is a small town in southeastern El Salvador that lies close to a beach popular with surfers. But the reason most outsiders know about this place has nothing to do with tourism. Intipucá is famous for the people who have left.

Listen to the radio feature here.

 

Ecuadorean Women Take the Lead as Men Migrate Away | Latino USA

In the region of Cañar, deep in the Ecuadorean Andes, out migration has become an unending cycle for more than four decades. But the benefits of migration can outweigh the costs, especially for the women who stay home, becoming breadwinners and taking on roles that were previously closed to them.

Listen to the radio feature here.

 

Panama's Climate Struggle | Deutsche Welle

Panama’s indigenous Kuna people own some of the most preserved tropical forests in Latin America, thanks to their strong land tenure rights and their traditional way of life. The Kuna have become a model for other indigenous groups, as they try to figure out their rights and their futures, in a warming planet. This story was supported by Mongabay’s Special Reporting Initative Fellowship.

Listen to the radio feature here.

 

Stray Bullets and Forgiveness | BBC World Service

Sharletta Evans lost her three year-old son, Casson, when a stray bullet pierced her car. The boy responsible - Raymond Johnson - was caught, and imprisoned, but Sharletta didn’t let the story end there. She bound herself to that boy, and to the mother of an accomplice - Paul Littlejohn - in extraordinary ways. Part of the BBC World Service's "Real America" storytelling project.

Listen to the radio documentary here.  


 

Saving Zapotec in LA | PRI's The World

There are an estimated 250,000 Oaxacans living in Southern California, most of whom left the Mexican state in the Sixties. Today, second and third generation descendents of those earlier migrants are embracing their roots from a distance--and with that, many are eager to learn--and rescue--the indigenous Zapotec language.

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Relatives of Tijuana's Missing Seek Answers | KPBS Public Broadcasting & Fronteras

“Whether you are rich or poor, it doesn’t matter. There are simply no investigations of disappearances," said Palacios, standing outside the church. "Lately, the government seems to have tried to make up for its past mistakes by opening old crime files, by calling witnesses and continuing on with investigations. But they chose to do this when it’s already too late.”

Listen to the radio feature here.

 

 

Ahmadi Muslims: Facing Persecution Abroad, But Finding a Home in the US | PRI's The World

In Pakistan, Indonesia, and Bangladesh, Ahmadis can face fierce persecution by other Muslims for departing from traditional Islamic doctrine. Under pressure, more Ahmadis are seeking refuge in the US, and their brand of Islam is becoming more influential and visible here. 

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One Immigrant Muslim’s Battle with Alcoholism in the US | PRI's The World

Khalid Iqbal has always known that the Koran prohibits drinking alcohol–even as he tried his first beer, about four decades ago.

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On Dumping Grounds | NPR's Latino USA 

What can farmworker communities do when they are living next to an unregulated waste dump that’s on Native American land? This is a documentary about the dilemma and impacts of garbage on lands with little regulation. (story begins at 13:12)

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Southern California's Pomona College Divided Over Firing of Undocumented Workers | Southern California Public Radio (KPCC)

It all started with complaints about lax hiring practices that reached Pomona College's board of trustees. The school hired an outside firm, which found 17 workers - 16 of them in the kitchen - who were without legal documents.

Listen to the radio feature here.

 

Code 915 | Radio Ambulante

It's rush hour at the world's busiest border crossing. A mass of pedestrians head into the US, some carrying suitcases, others, school backpacks. Ruxandra Guidi went looking for a US Border Guard named Angelica de Cima, and produced this radio documentary.

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Gold Mining Boom at the Border | NPR's Morning Edition

The price of gold in the international market is steadily rising: more than fivefold in the past decade alone, paving the way for a new gold rush. Ten old mines have reopened in remote mountain and desert areas of the American West over the past decade.

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U.N. Attempts Tough Police Reform in Haiti | NPR's Day to Day

It's four years now that the U.N. has had a mission in Haiti to try and stabilize the country. One important part, retraining the Haitian National Police. Police in Haiti are notorious for corruption and terrible human rights violations. Reporter Ruxandra Guidi has more from Port-au-Prince.

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all photos (unless noted) © 2014 Roberto (Bear) Guerra