Raquel Reichard

Raquel is an award-winning journalist and editor covering body politics, Latinx culture, wellness and social struggles.

Latina And Latinx Sex Educators To Follow For The Lessons Your Teacher Skipped

Sex education in the United States is failing young people. Only 13 states in the country require sex education to be medically accurate. As a result, countless teens are receiving information about their bodies, sexuality and relationships that are not based on research but instead on conservative and religious ideologies rooted in sexism, homophobia and transphobia. Research has shown that non-comprehensive sex education that only promotes abstinence and stigmatizes teenage sexuality doesn’t

The Lives Of LGBTQ+ Youth In Puerto Rico Are In Danger

Last month, Garcia, now a college student, was one of several queer and trans Puerto Ricans who offered their testimony in public hearings for Senate Bill 184, a measure that would have banned the practice. These individuals spoke about the mental, emotional, and, in some cases, physical violence experienced under conversion counseling, which has been linked to causing " serious potential harm ," such as depression and suicidal ideation, by The American Psychological Association and even classif

Yes, You Can Use SNAP to Shop for Groceries on Amazon — Here's How

For too long in the United States, a person’s socioeconomic status has determined their access to quality, healthful foods. Poorer families are more likely to live in food deserts than their wealthier counterparts. Without access to a car, carrying groceries home from neighborhood supermarkets can still be difficult. And for some who live with physical disabilities, in-person shopping isn’t an option, nor is it affordable to use a grocery delivery service.

Dominga de la Cruz-Becerril & Other Rebellious Women Who Fought for an Independent Puerto Rico

Most Puerto Ricans believe that the archipelago’s territorial status needs to change, but they are often divided on the best solution: independence, statehood or its current commonwealth status. Two bills in Congress aim to address the matter. The Puerto Rico Self-Determination Act calls for a status convention among local legislatures who are elected by the Puerto Rican people to solve its territorial status, while the Puerto Rico Statehood Admission Act pushes for the territory to become the 5

How Afro-Boricua Antonia Pantoja Fought For Education Equity

Few education organizers have had such a transformative impact on Latinx students as Antonia Pantoja. In the Afro-Puerto Rican educator and civil rights leader’s 80 years, she created spaces that restored dignity to discriminated youth of color and influenced policy that directly improved the way Spanish-speaking students learned in public schools. From New York to California, Pantoja’s legacy is still felt nearly two decades after her death on May 24, 2002. Born in San Juan, Puerto Rico, to a

3 stimulating sensations for exhilarating clitoral orgasms

For most people with vulvas, the clitoris is an essential component of sexual arousal. In fact, a 2017 study published in The Journal of Sex and Marital Therapy reported that 37% of people can’t achieve orgasm without clitoral stimulation. An organ with 8,000 nerve endings, the greatest number in the human body, clitoris actually means “key” in Greek – and it’s certainly the pathway to sexual pleasure for many. If you’re hoping to enhance intimacy in the bedroom or take your solo masturbation s

How to give your partner a soothing and sensual massage

Getting a massage is a relaxing treat with a variety of health benefits. Massage therapy wakes up your muscles, improves the circulation of blood and lymph fluid and drains harmful toxins. Even more, it’s been reported to reduce stress, anxiety and depression. Beyond physical and mental health, bodywork can also boost wellness and intimacy in your relationships. According to Geraldine Abergas, a New York-based massage therapist, bodyworker and neurofeedback practitioner, touch can deepen our ph

‘Connection That’s Just Ineffable’: This Collective Has High Hopes for the Future of Psychedelic Healing

Last November, Oregon voters passed a measure that legalized the use of psilocybin mushrooms for therapeutic purposes, becoming the first state in the country to do so. Starting in 2023, licensed therapists will be able to use psilocybin to treat chronic mental health issues, including depression, addiction and PTSD. Despite 55% of voters approving the measure, there remains a lot of confusion and stigma around psychedelic therapy, particularly among communities of color who haven’t been centere

With “Florecer,” LA Cumbia-Salsa Band La Mera Candelaria Celebrates Survivors Of Sexual Violence

In the United States, someone is sexually violated every 73 seconds. With each passing year, more than 433,600 people, mostly women and girls, experience some form of this brutality, including rape, molestation, sexual harassment, sex trafficking and reproductive coercion. For many survivors, art is used as a tool to promote healing, providing them with a creative outlet to externalize their trauma and express themselves. With the upcoming album Florecer, Stephani Candelaria, of the woman-fronted cumbia-salsa band La Mera Candelaria, uses art, and music in particular, to work through her own history with sexual abuse and inspire holistic healing among her listeners.

Embodied practices to help sexual assault survivors reconnect with their body

In the United States, the plight of sexual violence is prevalent and persistent. To put the numbers in perspective, a person experiences sexual assault every 73 seconds. Women and girls are among the most vulnerable. In fact, 1 in 6 women has experienced an attempted or completed rape in her lifetime. Research shows that most survivors continue to suffer well after the attack, many of them by disassociating from their bodies. Studies show that about 90 percent of people living with a dissociati

6 Ways to Use Your Tax Refund to Help People in Need and Make a Major Impact in Your Community

While community fridges first popped up in big cities, there are now hundreds located in neighborhoods across the country; and with your tax return and some time, it’s an initiative you can bring to your community, too. First, you’ll need to do a little research to determine where a community fridge would be most needed. Connect with local organizations who are already active in your community to see what they may have planned or in the works. Then, you’ll need to speak with small businesses in

7 Easy Ways to Save and Reuse Water at Home, Starting With Your Cooking Water

According to a report by the American Association for the Advancement of Science, about four billion people, representing nearly two-thirds of the global population, experience severe water scarcity at least one month of the year. Factors like climate change, geography, engineering, and resources all contribute to a region’s access to fresh water. For instance, 12 of the 17 most water-stressed countries in the world are in the Middle East and North Africa. Even still, water scarcity impacts comm

My Most Important Savings Account Isn't For Me — It's For My Neighbors

If giving back is important to you, creating a mutual aid account will only improve your service. When a neighbor is in need, you know one way you can help. When you’re moved by a GoFundMe campaign, you’re able to donate what you can without thinking twice about it. If a natural disaster suddenly devastates a town, all you have to do is find the grassroots organizations that are doing the work and consider if you want to send them goods or funds. There’s no need to glance at your budget, do comp

With Alegria Bilingual Media, Colombiana Davina A. Ferreira Is Uplifting Latine Storytelling

Pre-pandemic, an old yellow van drove through Los Angeles communities in Echo Park, Boyle Heights and Hawthorne. Inside, Colombian motorist Davina A. Ferreira, the founder and CEO of Alegria Bilingual Media, invited youth of color to take a look at the four-wheeled bookstore she created. Children and teens alike flipped through the pages of bilingual kids literature and classics by Latine and African-American authors like Gabriel García Márquez and Maya Angelou respectively. Oftentimes, she sent

Knowing When It’s Time To Leave Your Job, According To A Google Alum

She’s not alone. A 2018 report found that 4 in 10 Americans have a "side hustle," and 59 percent of that group consider the money disposable income. Many loathe the monotony of their jobs, and sooner or later, they long to start multiple projects at once. If that sounds like you, Murillo thinks you’re capable, and ultimately should honor all of your dreams — you just have to do it with intention and care. This will not only allow you to invest in the projects wholly but also prevent you from bur

In ‘Fat Chance, Charlie Vega,’ A Fat Puerto Rican Teen Learns How To Love Her Body

Literature, especially fairytale-like love stories, rarely ever center on fat girls, less so on round Latinas navigating life in a suburb that thinks them too large, too loud and too brown. With Fat Chance, Charlie Vega, Crystal Maldonado demands space in the literary YA universe with a coming-of-age story of a fat Puerto Rican teen girl who falls in love with a charming classmate and, most importantly, with herself. Like most of us, Charlie faces blows and setbacks on her journey to self-love:

More Mothers Are Hiring Doulas, But What Is A Doula? Here’s What You Need To Know

Luis Fonsi is kicking off 2021 with a new single. The Puerto Rican superstar premiered the music video for “Vacío” on Feb. 18 featuring rising Boricua singer Rauw Alejandro. The guys put a new spin on the classic “A Puro Dolor” by Son By Four. Luis Fonsi throws it back to his románticas. “I called Omar Alfanno, the writer of ‘A Puro Dolo,’ who is a dear friend,” Fonsi tells Latido Music. “I told him what my idea was [with ‘Vacío’] and he loved it. He gave me his blessing, so I wrote a new song

Meet Puerto Rican Activist & Hopeful NYC Councilmember Elisa Crespo

Now that Rep. Ritchie Torres (D-NY) is the first gay Afro-Latinx in the U.S. Congress, the former New York City council member’s seat is up for grabs—and Elisa Crespo is vying for the spot. Should the 30-year-old frontrunner garner enough votes in the March 23 Special Election, her victory would also be historic. If she wins, Crespo will be the first out transgender woman of color on the council. “I live in one of the poorest, hungriest, unhealthy boroughs in New York City,” Crespo says referri

My Family “Traveled” the World Last Year, Thanks to a New Monthly Tradition

Together, my boisterous Puerto Rican family members are also finally expanding their horizons. By the second month, when our taste buds made their way to Brazil, the dinners became more than a shared meal but also a way for my picky loved one to try new fares. At home, Puerto Rican grub is served seven days a week. The rare occurrence when spaghetti or lasagna is introduced, these Italian courses are given a boricua twist with a spoon of sofrito or a layer of maduros. But since initiating these

As The Plant-Based Movement Grows, Puerto Rican Restaurants Are Veganizing Their Menus

Casa Borinqueña has been feeding Oakland locals hungry for island cuisine since 2018. The pop-up and catering business won devout fans with pernil, shrimp mofongo, chicharrón de cerdo, and tostones con pollo. But last summer, Chef Lulu (who asked to be attributed by her first name) shocked, and in some cases angered, the small community when she veganized her menu. Many told the chef, who was raised on the archipelago and in Brooklyn, that Puerto Rican dishes sans meat, particularly pork, could
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