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Featured Blogger: Yesenia Corrales

Yesenia Corrales

Yesenia Corrales

For the past three years, the Medellín-based project HiperBarrio project has focused on shining a light on different neighborhoods around the city, such as La Loma, as well as other parts of Colombia. However, it has been the hard work of the project coordinators, and especially, the new bloggers, who have added life to the project.

This is another interview with one of these bloggers, Yesenia Corrales, who will also be present at the Global Voices Citizen Media Summit in Santiago, Chile that will be held on May 6-7 to share her experiences with the project.

Global Voices Citizen Media Summit 2010 - Santiago, Chile. May 6-7

Her start with the project began with a bit of skepticism. At the time, she was a frequent user of the public library in La Loma, and had even assisted with other projects in the community. When she was invited by Gabriel Vanegas, the librarian, to attend a meeting about the start of the project, she had her doubts:

There we met Álvaro Ramírez Ospina, who was the one who told us that afternoon, “I am going to teach you how to create and manage blogs. We are going to bring in cameras and video cameras, so that we can start to communicate with one another in different ways.” The attendees did not believe him, and said to oursleves, “how can someone come one day and promise us things?”

Soon enough, the first members of the HiperBarrio project in La Loma started to do just that. The way that they communicated the history of their neighborhood began to change. The team began the process of “rescuing the historical and cultural memory” of La Loma and according to Yesenia, started publishing “anecdotes that frequently happen in a lovely corner in the northwest Medellín” on their blogs.

Yesenia and the HiperBarrio group in La Loma

Yesenia and the HiperBarrio group in La Loma

For Yesenia, this experience has helped her “get to know once again, the dynamics of the residents’ lives, their problems, and to build a society by small groups of young people who demonstrate good teamwork.”

By continuing with her blogging as part of this project on her personal blog [es], her hopes are being reached. According to Yesenia, these include the ability to:

“Transmit” feelings and sensations to a global audience. To reach communities where young people and all people want to express themselves, as a testimony of the life of the community that can be seen through this means. Finally, to strengthen a large community of blogs where the reading, writing, and analysis of other blogs becomes the official language that promotes equality in citizen media.

Yesenia will be in good company at the GV Citizen Media Summit, where she will join other representatives from other Rising Voices projects to share not only their hopes for their projects, but for citizen media everywhere. Like many of Hiperbarrio's members, she is active on many social media sites, such as her Twitter and Flickr.

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