ADRA Colombia

You have been a blessing from God

Her son, with intellectual disability and heart failure, was her motivation to migrate.

September de 2022 | ADRA Colombia Press.

Marina’s economic situation in Venezuela had worsened, and she did not have sufficient resources to cover the food and medication for her family, especially her son. That’s why she decided to migrate from Venezuela to Colombia, despite the pain of leaving her other children behind. Marina sold a sound system and with that little money, she embarked on her journey. She took a bus from her city to San Cristobal, along with her son, her 11-year-old granddaughter, and her son-in-law.

They decided to go to Bucaramanga because it was a city close to the border where they had some acquaintances who extended a helping hand during the first month.

Interview with Marina, ADRA Bucaramanga, September 2022. [Photograph: ADRA Colombia]

The family’s main difficulty was finding a source of income due to Marina’s age, her son’s condition, and her son-in-law’s disability after losing a leg in an accident in Venezuela.

Marina, who is 72 years old, engages in recycling activities and sometimes relies on the help of others. Her son-in-law also works in recycling to support the needs of the four members of the household.

“I knew it wouldn’t be easy to leave my country, especially given my age and my son’s disability. We didn’t have the money to pay for rent and food in Colombia, but I decided to take the risk to improve my son’s well-being. I didn’t want him to experience crises by seeing how complicated our situation was in Venezuela,” Marina recounted.

Shortly after, an acquaintance told her about ADRA and the SASVEN project, which is implemented with the support of ADRA International. She was informed about the registration location and Marina attended the associated clinic, IPS UMA, where she and her family were registered.

Marina and her family are beneficiaries of the cash transfers provided by ADRA for food assistance for four months. They also received nutritional guidance, which helped them allocate the money more efficiently to improve their diet and quality of life. They attend medical consultations and receive the medications and laboratory tests they need to improve their health.

With tears in her eyes, Marina says, “Everything I have received from ADRA has been very good, especially my medications. Everyone at ADRA has treated me well. The little gift (money) they give me has helped a lot with food. I am grateful for all the help. You have been a blessing from God.”