From sex and politics to arts and culture, the women behind Locatora Radio have made their mark in the podcasting world — and with Latino audiences — with their open and blunt conversations. Hosts, Diosa, and Mala, joined us on LA Times Today to talk about their success.
Before starting the podcast, Diosa worked as a community organizer in the non-profit field in the South Bay of Los Angeles. She helped facilitate different projects for immigrant women and undocumented women in their communities.
Mala was working as a rape crisis counselor advocate at a local rape crisis center called Peace Over Violence. She provided on-call emergency response to survivors of sexual assault, domestic violence, child abuse, sex trafficking in L.A. City, and L.A. County.
In 2016, Mala and Diosa became friends after following each other online for several years. They are both L.A. locals and met at a Latina meet-up that they heard about on Facebook.
"We became friends in Downtown L.A., we started hanging out, and one day Diosa asked me if I would like to start a podcast with her. And, of course, I said yes. It sounded like so much fun, but it was also such an excellent vehicle for storytelling, for discussions, for interviews, and for archival work, which is why we call our podcast a radiophonic novela," said Mala.
Right away, they knew they wanted the podcast to highlight the talents of women of color while covering topics including sex education and wellness, culture, arts, politics, and intersectional feminism. Sex is a popular theme on their podcast because it is often deemed taboo in Latino households.
"Just because we don't talk about it, doesn't mean it's not happening. It doesn't mean we don't have sex, doesn't mean we don't have diverse sexualities. But, the conversation still needs to be had," said Diosa.
"So many folks in Latinx households and communities grow up with an understanding that as people we are hyper-sexualized, but we're not really given access to medically correct information about our bodies and our sexualities. So, when we started putting out this content and talking about things like masturbation, sexual assault, and consent, our listeners told us in writing and in person how impactful the conversation was to them because they felt an absence in their own life," added Mala.
Locatora Radio (Locamores) fans range from professional women to moms and college students.
When Mala and Diosa go to speaking engagements, people will drive long distances to hear them speak.
"We had a beautiful experience at Cardinal Stritch University in Milwaukee to speak and do a live-taping of Locatora Radio. And, we didn't know what to expect because we've never really been to the Midwest. We weren't sure how much of a Latinx podcast community was in Milwaukee. When we got there, the event was packed, and listeners told us they drove from an hour to two hours away to hear us speak. And that was super exciting. We love our listeners. And, many of them bring us ideas about the things that they feel like we need to be talking about in the program," said Mala.
The pandemic has not slowed Mala and Diosa down when it comes to Locatora Radio. It has given them a chance to get creative and rethink how they will do future events while staying connected to their audience.
"Television is something that Mala and I have both talked about, and being able to translate the show from audio to television is definitely a dream of ours," said Diosa.
To listen to Locatora Radio and to learn more about the podcast, log on to locatoraradio.com.