Centenarians

Americas Now

Colombia - Fragile X Syndrome (Michelle Begue) - For decades a small rural town in Colombia developed a reputation for having offbeat citizens who exhibited strange behavior. They became the focus of a scientific study that revealed they were actually victims of a gene mutation. It's called Fragile X. And it's a leading cause of physical, social and intellectual abnormalities. Correspondent Michelle Begue travelled to the town of Ricaurte to bring us this report. Game Changer - Lorena Nieva Teaching Dance to Disable (Anne Laurent) - In Mexico, a dance instructor is giving people with disabilities an opportunity to shine. Lorena Nieva is a ballerina and student of psychology. She combined her two passions to push them and rethink their limitations, by breaking with the strictness of ballet and focusing more on her students' needs. She's achieved great results both "in and out" of the studio. Lorena is this week's Game Changer. Urban Voices - NY - The Architect (Joe) - According to the U.S. Census Bureau, there were more than 55 million Latinos living in the United States as of 2016. Back in 1980, that number was under 15 million. Our Urban Voice was born in Latin America and has lived in the U.S. for decades. He re-located to New York City to seek success in a profession the town is famous for - architecture. Today he's the head of a leading firm in the city and helping enhance the skyline with his sleek and often slender structures. Our Urban Voice is architect Ismael Leyva.

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Americas Now

Peru - Amazon Reforestation (Dan Collyns) - Peru's Amazon most bio-diverse ecosystem is in the Madre de Dios region. It's also one of the most under threat from deforestation. The primary culprits are illegal logging, gold mining and livestock farming. The past decade has been especially devastating for the region. Correspondent Dan Collyns visited the area to survey the damage. He also spoke to some scientists who are finding innovative ways to fight back. Mexico - Firework Town (Alasdair Baverstock) - Fireworks have been dazzling spectators at celebrations across the world for centuries.

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Americas Now

Brazil - Housing Crisis (Maria Valls) - Sao Paulo is Brazil's financial capital and one of the most densely populated metropolitan areas in Latin America. The city of 12 million suffers from vast economic inequality, which drives poor families to occupy and squat in empty abandoned buildings throughout the municipality. The issue drew international attention in 2018 when a 24-story building occupied by squatters collapsed. Correspondent Maria Valls reports from Sao Paulo.

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Americas Now

Mexico - Tech-Mex - Part of U.S. President Donald Trumps' "get-tough" policy is expected to include an increase in the expulsion of undocumented citizens to their home countries. Mexico is one of the nations that might face the largest number of returnees. For many of them it could feel like starting over as they know little about the language and culture of their country of origin. That makes things like finding a job difficult. But the digital startup sector in Mexico is viewing the return of migrants from the U.S. as an opportunity.

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Americas Now

Argentina - Argentine Peso Crisis (Harris Whitbeck) - A year ago the future looked bright for Argentina. President Mauricio Macri had helped the country dodge a recession and the stock market was booming. But this year, as deep reforms were being implemented into the economy, fiscal disaster struck. And the nation has plunged into an economic crisis. At the center of this financial storm is the beleaguered Argentine peso, and its relationship to the US dollar.

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Americas Now

Chile - Church Scandals (Joel Richards) - When Pope Francis visited Chile in 2017 he received a lukewarm reception. Once one of the most Catholic countries in Latin America, Chileans' perception of the church has been challenged by revelations of widespread sexual abuse scandals dating back decades. There are hundreds, possibly thousands of victims. And prosecutors say the cover-up reaches the highest level of the Chilean church. The Pope is now taking action against members of the clergy in Chile. And he even invited three abuse survivors to Rome to speak with them and take their advice.

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Americas Now

Guatemala - Girls at Risk (Harris Whitbeck) - It was an event that shocked the entire country and made headlines around the world. 42 girls, locked up in a state home for children in Guatemala --burned to death. The fire broke out following protests and accusations of poor conditions and abuse. The incident also revealed many of the vulnerabilities faced by young people. More than a year after the tragedy the victim's relatives are still looking for answers. Correspondent Harris Whitbeck tells us more about Guatemala's girls at risk.

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Americas Now

Mexico - The other Migration (Mike Kirsch) - In the last 30 years more than a million Mexican scientists, researchers and intellectuals have left Mexico to find work in other countries. That's according to the Mexican government. The exodus has been referred to as an epic "brain drain." Another 160 thousand college graduate students have also left the country with very few of them planning to return. The government is now trying to lure them back. Correspondent Mike Kirsch reports.

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Americas Now

Colombia - Microfinances (Michelle Begue) - According to Colombia's National Statistics Department, 12.4 million people were living below the poverty line in Colombia in 2017. That translates into living on less than 88 dollars a month. For many of those residents dreams of having their own business seem impossible. But some industrious women, with some innovative ideas, have found support in the form of a financial service. And it's helping produce a long-term change in their lives. Correspondent Michelle Begue has the story from Bogota.

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Americas Now

Guatemala - Unearthing Answers - Guatemala is one of the Central American countries that suffered the most during the Cold War - a time of post-World War Two tensions between the Soviet Union and the United States. In particular a civil conflict in Guatemala from 1960 to 1996 that left hundreds of thousands dead -- and tens of thousands missing. More than two decades after the end of the conflict, forensic anthropologists are helping families who have been searching for their disappeared loved ones. Harris Whitbeck explains from Guatemala City.

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Americas Now

Ecuador - Venezuela Exodus (Harris Whitbeck) - South America is experiencing its largest mass migration in recent history. Tens of thousands of Venezuelans are fleeing the economic hardship and political instability in their country...arriving at the borders of neighboring countries each day. Peru, Colombia, Argentina and Brazil are all coping with intense pressure from the influx. Correspondent Harris Whitbeck reports from Ecuador, another country feeling the strain of the crisis -- and one that's already seen its share of mass migrations.

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Americas Now

Brazil - Black Pride (Stephen Gibbs) - Brazil is sometimes portrayed as one of the world's harmonious, multi-ethnic "rainbow nations." But the truth is more complicated. For generations, white Brazilians have enjoyed preferential treatment over their black counterparts. It's been especially noticeable in higher education. Most publicly-funded universities are filled by white students, even though half of all Brazilians are of African descent. To reverse that trend, the government has adopted a quota policy.

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