Hello, I am Danna Michelly Quinones Rodriguez. I am from Colombia and a Spanish citizen.
I have lived in London since 2013 and am a mother of two exceptional children.
For the last two years, I have been involved as a mother, volunteer and leader in different
projects through Citizens UK and PACT, TSIP and On-Road Media.
My journey as a PACT volunteer led to me becoming a community researcher at TSIP – both positions
have been part of my growth as a human being and I have loved being part of empowering
individuals for change. The strength of work for the community is when we raise our voices,
leave our differences aside and work to bring our vision for a better society to life.
As a community researcher, I have found that listening and communication are essential to
building a broad and open community where people can enjoy themselves while working
together to tackle inequalities, with creative solutions.
Social justice makes a difference for every human being and Centric empowers researchers
to work together to accomplish it.
I would like to contribute with my passion, dreams, and commitment to raising awareness
about the projects, which have made real changes across London.
Early School Life
I studied up to the high school level in Colombia, alongside this I took a secretary course.
When I had graduated, I moved to Spain and validated my high school certificate. I have
enjoyed studying arts, languages, science and technology.
I decided to join the university last year to continue with a higher certificate in Skills for the
Workplace Leadership and Management Level 4 at the University of Wales Trinity Saint
David. In this course, I have been learning about leadership, teamwork, time management,
creative thinking, problem solving and solutions, digital skills, entrepreneurial and analytical
thinking, presentation skills and communication. I am also currently studying a Fashion
Design course in Spanish and I will study alongside Fashion Promotion at University. I would
like to continue my study and emphasise those courses with a vision and mission of social
change in the industry, creating awareness in the community, being sustainable and being
free to explore the heritage of my Afro-Colombian background.
Over the last few years, I have built myself up professionally and personally. I attended
some courses at Morley College, taking classes online and training myself, and also being
self-taught. This led me to produce and experiment with textile, illustration,
drawing and photography, which has allowed me to expand my creative skillset. At the same
time, I participated in workshops and collaborated on different projects. I manage three
separate Instagram accounts, for my photography, illustrations and fashion, all made by me.
I have always enjoyed communicating messages with creativity. Please take a look at my
accounts and see for yourself
@Flowermamalondon @dannalondonart @abitofalllondon.
I participated in a video with Trust for London for our campaign on air pollution with On-Road
Media. In the last year, I have been experiencing On-Road Peer Support Groups, looking into
a long-term and sustained change in the media’s portrayal of social issues. On-Road improves
the way that the media and other institutions treat groups that are marginalised in today’s
society. Throughout this work, I have had a journey of personal development. My
communication skills have improved my confidence, I find it easier to express myself and
use my two main languages, Spanish and English, across workshops with PACT and Centric.
I have written articles for the PACT website and made many illustrations, working as part of
the writing group. I have done photography in different events for PACT and Citizens UK.
I am passionate about being involved in the community and became a founding member of
the Family Food Club to help families to eat healthier. During this period, I learned how
to work in a team and how to engage with adults and children to make a change. I lead sessions
with other mothers as a volunteer and developed time management skills to direct the
instructions step-by-step, elaborating the meals. I learned to speak to large groups of people
while being able to teach them and explore new ideas.
I am currently contributing “Just Transition campaign”. I did a listening campaign for some
members of PACT. Being bilingual has helped me to listen in Spanish and
translate it into English, thus connecting the Latin American community in this powerful
Becoming a Community Researcher
I have been collaborating as a volunteer in TSIP as a community researcher since April
2020. I have done interviews for different organisations and institutions about community
researchers and their role in the community. This program helps me trust my abilities to
support my community and create awareness in social changes for vulnerable communities
where I belong.
Being part of TSIP and now Centric as a Community researcher provides a feeling of
enrichment every day. The projects always focus on how to make positive impacts in the
Community. When I first joined, I did not know how vital it was to understand what is
happening around us, the issues that aren't inclusive on underrepresented communities.
Breaking out the academic research with the community research model developed within
TSIP, and now forming as part of Centric, is opening new doors and opportunities for people
like me. We want to see changes in our society and make significant progress towards a
more pleasant society.