StoryCorps wants Hispanics to tell their stories with Historias

NEW YORK: Nonprofit StoryCorps, an oral history project, will launch its Hispanic initiative, StoryCorps Historias, on September 24, and hired Estrada Communications to help with the launch.

NEW YORK: Nonprofit StoryCorps has hired Estrada Communications to help with the launch of the Hispanic initiative for its oral history project, StoryCorps Historias.

A partnership with the Latino Public Radio Consortium, Latino USA, and the US Latino and Latina World War II Oral History project, StoryCorps Historias is funded by the Corporation for Public Broadcasting. The program, which will launch September 24, allows friends and family to interview each other, with help from StoryCorps facilitators, for 40-minute recordings that are saved in the Library of Congress and sometimes aired on public radio. StoryCorps was founded in 2003.

Estrada was chosen after an RFP that included a total of five Hispanic-owned agencies. It is a nine-month contract that began August 17.

"The scope of work is mostly the management of the launch event in Washington, DC," said Diana Velez-Griffen, communications specialist for StoryCorps Historias. "They are going to do outreach to both national and local Hispanic outlets, as well as the general media. And they are reaching out to the Hispanic Caucus and other figures in the Hispanic community to have them participate in the DC event."

"It fits with a lot of nonprofit and community service projects we work with," said Jim Estrada, founder, chairman, and CEO of Estrada Communications. He also noted that the agency was excited to build up its national work and relationships with Hispanic organizations.

With the national launch in Washington, and local launches in cities including New York, Houston, and Miami, StoryCorps Historias hopes to collect at least 700 taped interviews that will be used "to record the stories and life experiences of Latinos in the US," Velez-Griffen said.

The campaign will work with local community partners to spread the word about the initiative, and will target various demographics within the Hispanic community. "We're trying to be as inclusive as you can be," Velez-Griffen said.

Online, StoryCorps Historias has a Facebook page and is creating its own Web site. It will also blog the progress of StoryCorps Historias, and include information about it on NPR's Web site. 

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