Venezuelan Parents Giving Up Children They Can’t Feed

Venezuelans have been experiencing food shortages off and on for several years, but the shortages have been especially bad and getting worse over the last couple of years during the current economic crisis there.  Roughly 90% of Venezuelan families cannot afford to feed their families as the inflation rate over the past twelve months reached over 4000%. The inflation rate for the month of January, alone, was 84% which would have prices doubling every 35 days.

According to a recent report:

…the sheer number of children being taken to orphanages and child-custody centers has increased so much that public institutions for vulnerable children are “collapsing,” and private organizations are struggling to take in the others. The number of children being abandoned on the streets is also increasing at alarming rates.

A Venezuelan social worker provided the Post with a heartbreaking quote that captured the desperation of the situation.

“They can’t feed their children,” said Magdelis Salazar in reference to poverty-stricken parents. “They are giving them up not because they don’t love them but because they do.”

…As this reality affects parents who struggle to provide for their children, placing them in the care of a foster organization is becoming an increasingly common decision. One mother told the Post that she hoped she would one day be able to collect her children from the agency she was forced to leave them at.

“You don’t know what it’s like to see your children go hungry,” she said. “You have no idea. I feel like I’m responsible, like I’ve failed them.”

Related:

Household Food Security Preparedness (pdf) – World Health Organization

Venezuelan Hunger Turns to Looting

Conditions in Venezuela continue to deteriorate, as their society and economy collapse further. From the PanamPost, Recent Wave of Looting Shows Extent of Hunger in Venezuela

The economic crisis and the food shortage in Venezuela is so serious that looting has become commonplace throughout the country. In January alone, nearly 400 small protests and more than 100 instances of looting have taken place across 19 states, according to the Venezuelan Conflict Observatory.

On Saturday, January 13, Venezuelans began looting for food in the states of Guárico and Zulia.

In Maracaibo — the capital of Zulia — residents looted a supermarket after waiting hours in line to buy corn flour. Violence broke out when they were informed that only members of pro-government community councils could make purchases…

The Bolivarian National Guard has been tasked with keeping the area in order with gunshots and tear gas, but the situation seems irrepressible…

The situation in Venezuela is becoming increasingly worse. Inflation has reached 2,616 percent and the minimum monthly salary is at US $5 — barely enough for a kilo of meat and a carton of 30 eggs…

n January 11, a group of Venezuelans desperate to find food broke into a farm in Merida and dismembered about 40 cows for their meat.

According to Manuel López, President of the Association of Agricultural Producers of the Sur del Lago area, criminals go from farm to farm, extorting producers and asking them to give up an animal. If they don’t,  they destroy everything…

(Twitter)