Volunteer Report of the San Telmo Newspaper project in Buenos Aires
El Periodico de San Telmo is a nonprofit newspaper that is published every two months. It is run by a small group of San Telmo locals who handle everything from writing stories to recruiting advertisers. The paper’s goal is to celebrate the neighborhood of San Telmo and create an open forum and dialogue for its community.
San Telmo is one of the most colorful neighborhoods in Buenos Aires. Historically, it was Buenos Aires’s first industrial area that eventually became inhabited by the well to do. However, in 1871 a yellow fever epidemic swept through Buenos Aires and the rich abandoned San Telmo and moved north to Recoleta, Palermo, and Belgrano.
Today artists, poets, young travelers and working class families inhabit San Telmo. Its historic cobblestone streets lead to antique shops, boutique bookstores and tasty family bakeries. It is perhaps best known for its local antiques fair that attracts tourists and locals alike every Sunday.
For me however, the best thing about San Telmo was becoming integrated in the local community by doing my internship at the local newspaper. My time working at the newspaper was one of the highlights of my time in Buenos Aires. I mainly worked with Catherine who is the paper’s editor and director. Working with Catherine really taught me a lot about hard work, organization and focus. Also, Cat speaks perfect English so I was able to clearly communicate with her which helped me do more for the paper. She was always helpful and encouraging; and full of advice on good things to see and do in Buenos Aires!
My workdays were always varied. During the first week, I interviewed people in cafes and bars to collect quotes for that month’s issue of the newspaper. I also took photos of the people that I interviewed and of local graffiti for another article. While doing this work, I was able to practice Spanish and also get to know the locals of San Telmo. Later on, I was asked by Cat to help conduct an internal survey of the newspaper. My job was to individually meet with members of the staff and interview them about their involvement in the San Telmo newspaper. I enjoyed this interview process as I got to know the individual members of the staff and really could make an impact on the direction of the paper.
Cat was also very helpful with contacting my University and filling out the correct forms to ensure that I got credit for my internship in Argentina. I recently heard that the San Telmo newspaper received a grant from the city to assist them in their operations. There is a bright future ahead for them and if you get the opportunity to have an internship here I highly recommend that you do it!
contact Volunteer Work Latin America to enquire about the vacancies!