– Read more testimonies of how God is working through Samaritan’s Purse to provide relief for families on the Colombia-Venezuela border.
– Follow us on Instagram to meet individual families impacted by the Samaritan’s Purse Colombia projects.
Due to one of the largest migration crises in Latin American history, Venezuelan men, women, and children are fleeing by the thousands to find a better life. Samaritan’s Purse is working at the border in Colombia and has established shelters along the migrant route to provide food, hygiene items, and a safe place to sleep for these families.
To learn more about the work happening on the ground in northern Colombia, Kristy Graham calls Eric Huxley, the Samaritan’s Purse country director for Colombia. He summarizes the history of Venezuela from the past twenty years and explains how poor economic management has caused hyperinflation. The financial condition has threatened access to basic human necessities—an average monthly salary is no longer enough to buy just one loaf of bread.
“If you’re a family and your wages aren’t even enough to put food on the table, you’re forced with a difficult decision,” Eric explains. “Do you stay and hope things get better, or do you get out and try to make a new life somewhere else?”
Samaritan’s Purse has two distinctive shelters along the migrant route to provide for the outstanding needs: one in Cúcuta, 30 km from the Venezuelan border, and the other in Bucaramanga, which is another 230 km. Each shelter provides hot meals for those who pass through on their trip and a safe place to rest. They also offer a space for children to play as well as showers and restrooms—a luxury after the migrants have walked for miles and miles.
Our podcast correspondent visited with many families at the Samaritan’s Purse shelters who struggled with the decision to leave their lives in Venezuela and start anew in Colombia. In most cases, the migrants will walk for days on end—reaching heights of up to 12,000 feet in the Andes mountains—before making it to their final destination. To help them along the way, Samaritan’s Purse partners with local churches to identify those most in need and provide essential items for their journey.
Pastor Yahir, a local minister with a longstanding relationship with Samaritan’s Purse, told our teams that all he wanted to do was serve his people in the community through God’s love. For years he strived to bring help and healing, but he lacked the resources to do so. By partnering with Samaritan’s Purse, his church has the opportunity to provide for families physically while witnessing to them spiritually.
“This has been the answer to my prayers,” Pastor Yahir said. “I’ve always wanted to help people but my resources are limited. This ministry has blessed many people, but the most blessed is myself.”
Listening to testimony after testimony of lives changed through the Samaritan’s Purse outreach, Kristy is reminded of Psalm 146:9, James 2:15-17, and Isaiah 58:10-11. Please continue to pray for the families fleeing on foot for refuge in Colombia, as well as endurance for the Samaritan’s Purse teams providing help in Jesus’ Name.