United Airlines and Amigos de las Américas (AMIGOS) today announced the winner of the 2015 Latin America Photo Contest. Maria Fernanda Antillón Medina, 26, of Leon, Guanajuato, Mexico, took the prize-winning photo entitled “Florencia y su cálido hogar” in Patacancha, Peru, in September. She will receive two round-trip coach travel certificates to a United destination of her choice in the United States or Central America.
Antillón, an architect whose passions also include adventure traveling and drawing, visited the rural community of Patacancha near Ollantaytambo, an Inca archaeological site close to The Sacred Valley of the Incas, where she met Florencia, pictured in the photo. Florencia invited Antillón and her friend into her home to show them her handmade textiles and offer them a meal and tea.
“The silence was so perfect and profound, the only thing I could hear was the water boiling and the clink of the pots,” said Antillón. “The light was coming in through the window shining on Florencia’s face, adding a touch of mysticism to the atmosphere, which is when I decided to take the photo.”
“Maria Fernanda’s photo captures the magical essence of Latin America,” said Maria Cristina Osorio, United’s director of communications – Latin America. “We congratulate her and the other photographers who participated in the AMIGOS Latin America photo contest. United is very pleased to support AMIGOS and to connect cultures throughout the Americas.”
Antillón plans to use her United ticket to travel to national parks, where she hopes to find inspiration in nature that she can transfer to her architectural work.
Honorable mentions went to Johana Cortez-Hernandez, a 19-year-old student from East Palo Alto California attending Connecticut College, and Molly Miller-Petrie, a 28-year-old research analyst from Seattle, Washington. Cortez-Hernandez took her photo of a Mayan woman making tortillas in Yucatan, Mexico, last summer during her work as an AMIGOS Project Supervisor. Molly Miller-Petrie, an AMIGOS volunteer in 2006, took her photo of the Mombacho volcano in Caterina, Nicaragua, while visiting her host family in October 2015.
To view the winning photo and runners-up, visit http://amigosinternational.org/united-contest-winner/ and the AMIGOS Facebook page www.facebook.com/AmigosLink.
Photos submitted for the contest had to be original and taken in countries currently served by both United and AMIGOS: Colombia, Costa Rica, the Dominican Republic, Ecuador, Mexico, Nicaragua, and Panama. A team of judges from the AMIGOS program and United selected the winners.
From its mainland U.S. hubs, United operates more than 1,000 nonstop flights a week to 63 cities in 28 countries in Latin America and the Caribbean, including service to 26 Mexican cities (more than any other airline from the U.S.), 10 cities in Central America, eight cities in South America, and 19 cities in the Caribbean.
AMIGOS is an international non-profit organization with headquarters in Houston, Texas. AMIGOS works to create a world where each young person becomes a life-long catalyst for social change through experiences rooted in cultural immersion and leadership development across the Americas. AMIGOS provides powerful experiences that sets our youth on the path to be leaders in a global community and lead projects that have a meaningful local impact. Only AMIGOS offers the full cultural immersion that will both challenge our youth and leave them with lifelong memories. Through 50 years of programming, more than 27,000 AMIGOS volunteers have gained greater social awareness, stronger leadership skills, and increased passion to be agents of change. We are proud of our alumni network of change-makers and global citizens. In 2015, AMIGOS is operating in the following countries of the Americas: Colombia, Costa Rica, the Dominican Republic, Ecuador, Mexico, Nicaragua, Paraguay, Peru, Uruguay and the United States. For more information, visit www.amigosinternational.org.
United Airlines and United Express operate an average of nearly 5,000 flights a day to 352 airports across six continents. In 2014, United and United Express operated nearly two million flights carrying 138 million customers. United is proud to have the world’s most comprehensive route network, including U.S. mainland hubs in Chicago, Denver, Houston, Los Angeles, New York/Newark, San Francisco and Washington, D.C. United operates more than 700 mainline aircraft, and this year, the airline anticipates taking delivery of 34 new Boeing aircraft, including the 787-9 and the 737-900ER. United is also welcoming 49 new Embraer E175 aircraft to United Express. The airline is a founding member of Star Alliance, which provides service to 192 countries via 28 member airlines. Approximately 84,000 United employees reside in every U.S. state and in countries around the world. For more information, visit united.com, follow @United on Twitter or connect on Facebook. The common stock of United’s parent, United Continental Holdings, Inc., is traded on the NYSE under the symbol UAL.
Contributed: Hispanicize Wire – AMIGOS and United Airlines Announce 11th Annual Latin America Photo Contest Winner