COLOMBIAN BORDER – Flies buzzed all around. The smell of feces lingered in the humid air of the decrepit, open-air shelter where Venezuelan families stopped to recover from the strenuous three-to-five-day walking journey.
Forced by the socioeconomic collapse and humanitarian crisis in their country, these Venezuelan refugees had crossed into Cúcuta, Colombia, and had walked up the perilous Colombian mountainside—malnourished, dehydrated, and in need of basic medical aid.
Helping Venezuelan Refugees In Need
This is the heart-wrenching reality for thousands of Venezuelan refugees, but on this day, the staggering need brazenly stared us down at the resting place in Bochalema. A foul, murky river was the huddle spot for the bedraggled migrants to soak their feet, and, shockingly, to fill up their water bottles.
Children were drinking from this polluted river, and the majority were suffering from diarrhea and stomach infections.
Clean Water for Refugees
A few minutes later, kids were drinking from the water filtration system, which pumped the polluted river water and converted it to clean, potable water.
On this day, Venezuelan children saw the love of God in a real, tangible way. Our words were not empty; they were life-giving and provided a vital resource for their survival.
This was possible thanks to the generous support of Operation Blessing partners who, like you, have joined our mission to demonstrate God’s love by alleviating human need and suffering around the world.
Yet the need is ever-growing. As thousands of Venezuelan refugees travel for hundreds of miles to cities in Colombia and neighboring countries, clean drinking water is paramount. We need your support to continue helping Venezuelan refugees. This includes mobilizing and setting up more water filtration systems along the route.
Roberto Torres was on the ground in Colombia, helping Operation Blessing respond to the needs of Venezuelan refugees.