It is no secret the unimaginable humanitarian crisis that is currently affecting the land of Venezuela. Every day more and more Venezuelans are leaving everything behind and fleeing to neighboring countries seeking help and aid in whichever way they are able to get it.
One of those countries that has been directly affected by the influx of refugee seekers is Trinidad (& Tobago)
Trinidad is 5,128 sq km in size. For the sake of comparison, it is 24 times smaller than New York with a population of 1.4 million people. Trinidad is also just seven (7) miles off the coast of Venezuela.
Because of the close proximity to each other, Trinidad has seen a mass movement of Venezuelans coming into island seeking assylum. It is estimated that there are currently over 40,000 Venezuelans in Trinidad at the moment.
It may not seem like a lot when compared to the intake from other countries, but for a small Caribbean island whose economy is not in the best shape, it is a significant number.
The current laws in Trinidad with regards to people seeking refugee is not the most productive or welcoming, however the government of Trinidad & Tobago is giving a two (2) week amnesty beginning on May 31st and ending on June14th 2019 to allow anyone seeking refugee status to register with immigration. This will allow refugee seekers the oppurtunity to work in Trinidad with other stipualtions attached.
It is a further strain on the economy but Venezuela and Trinidad has always maintained a healthy relationship with each other and even in the midst of economic hard times, the citizens, as well various NGOs have been stepping up and offering help to our brother and sisters in their time of need.
Despite what reports and rumours may say, the people of Trinidad have not been ignoring the refugee crisis. The stand our goverment has taken does not reflect the view or heart of most Trinidadians.
The purpose of this campaign is to raise funds that will allow us to purchase food vouchers and hampers to distribute to Venezuelans who are registering during this period and until the end of the month of June in the hope that it will help their process of settling be easier while they begin to search for jobs here in Trindad.
Just because they are desparate does not mean their dignity must be stripped away or sold.
Wherever you are in this great big amazing world, would you join us in helping the people of this great country? They are the unfortunate victims of politics and power. But Venezuelans are an amazing people with so much strength and love to give.
We know that this is temporary and one day soon they will be able to return their homeland and enjoy the wealth and prosperity that she has to offer, but until then, we want to help make their stay as peaceful as possible.
"We can't do everything, but we must do something." - Darren Kitto.