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Get the facts about the crisis in Venezuela and how to help
Posted: September 13, 2018
A Fast Developing Crisis
A political crisis has turned into a humanitarian disaster for hundreds of thousands of Venezuelans.
Deteriorating economic and political conditions, hyperinflation and infectious disease outbreaks in the country over the last four years have caused severe shortages of food and medicine and stretched the health care system. Now they are triggering an exodus of Venezuelans who are pouring across the borders of Brazil, Colombia, Ecuador and Peru, badly straining local services, causing food shortages and long waits for health care.
So far, 2.3 million people have fled Venezuela since 2014. That’s about the size of the population of New Mexico.
Life is Becoming Impossible for Venezuelans
The political turmoil has made life for many Venezuelans all but impossible. Soaring inflation has made basic food and health care unaffordable. Every day, up to 3,000 Venezuelans, including doctors, have had to pack up their belongings and have been fleeing their country in droves as the economy collapses.
Once across the border the Venezuelans are vulnerable to violence because of poor security conditions and find it hard to find food, medicine and shelter. Border cities, like, Cúcuta, Colombia, which have seen the highest rates of arriving Venezuelans, are now experiencing infectious disease outbreaks.
Health workers have recorded a 50% increase of measles and diphtheria among the 1.1 million Venezuelans who have fled to Colombia.
Humanitarian and medical personnel are assisting as best they can, but their efforts hampered by severe shortages of equipment, supplies and health provider skills. The increase in demand has forced hospitals to leave patients in corridors as their capacity has peaked.
What is Project HOPE doing to prepare
Project HOPE is preparing to respond to the crisis in Venezuela by deploying a team to Cúcuta to provide vaccinations and health care education.
The team’s main objectives will be to strengthen the strained health care system, improve care for Venezuelans and improve referrals between health facilities and the community. Project HOPE has volunteers ready, medical personnel and the health care infrastructure expertise to get started making a difference, but your help is still needed! There are ways to help Venezuela by making a gift to fund Project HOPE’s efforts toward humanitarian aid like the Venezuelan Crisis 2018. We are acting fast to help families and children fleeing the crisis in Venezuela and we need your help.
1.1 million estimated Venezuelans and Colombian returnees from Venezuela sheltering in Colombia
611,000 estimated food-insecure Venezuelans and returnees in Colombia
909,000 estimated Venezuelans and returnees in need of health assistance in Colombia
Project HOPE has responded to every major disaster since the 2004 Indonesian tsunami with medical volunteer support, donations of medicines and supplies, and long-term efforts to rebuild damaged health systems. Most recently, HOPE provided care for people impacted by Hurricanes Harvey, Irma, and Maria in 2017 and HOPE is still in Puerto Rico supporting health needs. In Guatemala, HOPE provided humanitarian aid following Hurricane Stan in 2005 and has implemented maternal and child health programs in the country since then.