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Meeting with the Colombian Association of Manitoba

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In the second episode of the Latino-Canadian community, Fernanda introduced us to the members of the Colombian Association of Manitoba. Roberto Sotello, Vice-President and Diana Carolina Morales Valenzuela, Project Manager, tell us the history of the organization’s formation, current projects and activities.

Why do Colombians choose Winnipeg as a new home, and what helps them to preserve their heritage?

Roberto Sotello moved to Canada in 2006 and has been a part of the Colombian Association of Manitoba since then. He is happy to be a part of the organization. The impetus for starting the organization was a desire to do something nice for the community and preserve its own culture and heritage. The first step to that was a decision to celebrate independence day on July 20. Another part is the decision to hold around three-four parties during the year, which is a good opportunity to meet together. But, just as important, it’s the perfect time to introduce the culture to their kids.

Sotello tells about the participation at the Folklorama and how meaningful it was for the Colombian people.

“We are proud that we managed to participate in Folklorama. We reached out to all Colombian-Canadian and collected 200 volunteers. We celebrated our dance, food, culture and many other things. We really enjoyed all the time we worked”, says Sotello.

Diana Carolina Morales Valenzuela names three things that attract Colombian people to Manitoba.

“When people from my country ask me why I chose Winnipeg, I say three things. First, it’s very quiet. Second, if you have a family, Winnipeg is a good place for you to raise kids. Last but not least, Winnipeg is not expensive”, says Diana Carolina Morales Valenzuela.

– Yuliia Kovalenko, U Multicultural

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