Venezuela Needs Our Help

Crime. Injustice. Violence. These are just a few words that come to my mind when I think about what’s happening in Venezuela at the moment. As of right now, the country is facing one of the worst humanitarian crises in history, and it breaks my heart to see my country and my people hurting. Although I left Venezuela nearly nine years ago, I still hold it close to my heart and dream of going back, hoping that one day all of this injustice will be over.

In case you’re not familiar with Venezuela’s situation, I’ll give you a brief rundown of what’s been happening for the past 20 years. In 1998, Venezuela came into the hands of a socialist government, when Hugo Chavez won the elections after performing a coup d’état on the previous president. He followed in Fidel Castro’s – the former President of Cuba – footsteps, and implemented socialism in the country, becoming a dictator and silencing everyone’s opinions. Venezuelans were not happy, as they didn’t have a say in what was going in the country, and democracy was lost. Little by little, the country’s economy began to plummet, but it all started to go downhill in 2013.

In 2013, Chavez died of cancer, and the country’s Vice-President – Nicolas Maduro – won, becoming the nation's next president. Although the elections were rigged, he claimed his way through the presidency, following Chavez’s example. Maduro’s lack of knowledge and inability to manage a country led to the worst economic crisis the country has ever faced. Inflation increased, which caused the currency to devaluate and resources to become scarce due to the lack of production that was caused by this inflation. Basic necessities such as medical supplies and food became a luxury for thousands of Venezuelans.

To help alleviate the situation, the US government recently sent a large stock of supplies over to the Venezuelan border with Colombia, which they planned on distributing to the thousands of people in need. However, Maduro felt so threatened by this, that he sent troops to the border to destroy the supplies and throw tear gas at everyone who was trying to help. He also sent troops to the Brazilian and Colombian borders to shoot at civilians, and they shot four indigenous people from the Pemon tribe, which is an indigenous tribe that lives in some areas of Brazil, Guyana and Venezuela. Not only is this unacceptable, but it is inhumane. He is denying the people of their basic needs, and in the process causing thousands of lives to be lost.

This is why Venezuela needs our help. Just by being informed and spreading the word about what is going on in the country, you’ll be one step ahead. If you want to help, I encourage you to talk about this situation with your friends, neighbors, classmates, etc. You might think this might not help much, but it does, because it is important that people all over the world are well informed, so that Venezuela has more international support, because together we can achieve more. If we all unite our forces, we can help stop this crisis and save this beautiful country that millions of people – including myself - call home.