A New Version of Westward Migration


Since I've been living in Medellin, the Venezuelan crisis has been not only a frequent story on the news, but a reality that I notice in my everyday life. When I take the bus to work, it's not uncommon for a Venezuelan immigrant to board the bus, trying to sell us some candy for a few pesos and sharing with us a story of desperation and a long journey from home. As I walk the streets, I see Venezuelans with handmade signs announcing their plight and their need for help. And in conversation with Colombians, I hear many different perspectives on the Venezuelan immigrants. Are they a nuisance here in Colombia? Should we welcome them with open arms? Are they criminals, or just people in need, with few other options? In many ways, 'The Venezuelans' have become a dehumanized group in Colombia. They are talked about in mass, rather than as individuals, and they are often associated with crime, begging and unnecessary dependence. But what's really going on to provoke this mass migration to Colombia from Venezuela? Let's learn more...

What community need did I learn about?:

Many Venezuelans are leaving their home country and immigrating to other parts of Latin America, and the world, in search of better opportunities and to flee an unstable political situation in their own country.