One Templeton resident and her partner are putting together the only all-Spanish magazine in San Luis Obispo County, which will be available through the county and in Santa Maria starting in January 2020.
Latinos make up 23 percent of San Luis Obispo County's population, and 18 percent of the households speak a language other than English, according to the U.S. Census Bureau. The city of Santa Maria is 76 percent Latino with 64 percent of households speaking another language.
Veronica Macias moved to San Luis Obispo County 17 years ago, and her first language is Spanish. Macias said when she first moved to the area, the number of Spanish speakers was small, and it was difficult to feel like she was part of a community dominated by English speakers.
"I became very involved in the community, at the time, by attending school board meetings and advocating for parents and students that were Spanish speakers," she said.
From that experience, Macias was advised to join Promotores Collaborative San Luis Obispo County—a community-based model of outreach that works to eliminate the disconnect between predominately non-minority-run organizations and the underserved minority populations.
During her time in the all-volunteer program, she said she still felt like there was a gap between the Latino population and the rest of the community. Macias said she always had a dream of creating a community magazine or what she refers to as a resource for Spanish speakers.
Next month, her dream will become a reality with the magazine Somos!: La Revista que Edua, Inspira, y te Conecta. It means "We are: The Magazine that Educates, Inspires, and Connects You." The magazine will have articles based on interviews with local professionals and research on topics like healthy food habits, general health, mental health, business strategies, academic programs, local government issues, personal finance, technology, and family engagement. There will not be any opinion pieces.
Macias said she wants the magazine to be a resource for the community to feel more connected to their area and the individuals in it.
"It's made to inspire the people that pick it up to grow personally and for some to grow professionally," she said.
Somos! will be in business offices in San Miguel, Shandon, Paso Robles, Templeton, Cambria, Atascadero, Morro Bay, Los Osos, San Luis Obispo, Arroyo Grande, Nipomo, Santa Maria, and Guadalupe.
The magazine can also be accessed online through the publication's website—somosrev.com—or delivered directly to a reader's home. Δ