Colombia

Colombia Crisis
USAID is providing humanitarian assistance in Colombia for vulnerable Venezuelans fleeing crisis in their country
AFP PHOTO / GEORGE CASTELLANOS

Key Developments

USAID's Office of U.S. Foreign Disaster Assistance (USAID/OFDA) and Office of Food for Peace (USAID/FFP) are responding to a complex emergency stemming from an influx of people fleeing an economic and political crisis in Venezuela to neighboring countries, including BrazilColombia, Ecuador, and Peru.

With nearly $84 million in additional assistance for Colombia, USAID continues to support partners to implement multi-sector relief programs across the country. Using $20 million in new support from USAID, the UN World Food Program will continue providing emergency food assistance, including food vouchers and hot meals, to vulnerable Venezuelans, Colombian returnees, and host community members in Colombia. Additionally, $43 million in new support will allow two USAID non-governmental organization (NGO) partners to implement multipurpose cash assistance—including cash transfers for food—and nutrition programming to reach vulnerable populations in the country.

A USAID NGO partner reached nearly 3,000 people with health care services—including through clinical activities, health awareness sessions, mobile health units, and technical trainings—in Colombia’s Arauca, Atlántico, La Guajira, and Norte de Santander departments from August 5 to 15, bringing the total number of individuals reached since August 2018 to more than 73,800 people. With approximately $5 million in new USAID support, the partner will continue to provide critical health care services for individuals in the four departments, as well as support health interventions for vulnerable populations in four additional departments.

From July 31 to August 13, the International Organization for Migration (IOM) provided more than 20,200 people with health assistance—including health consultations and referrals, technical training of health officials and community leaders, and vaccination activities—in Colombia. With $4.7 million from USAID, IOM will continue to provide critical health services for vulnerable populations in the country. Since August 2018, the UN agency has reached approximately 97,000 people in Colombia with USAID support.

Background

Deteriorating economic and political conditions in the Bolivarian Republic of Venezuela since 2014 have contributed to increasing humanitarian needs and triggered an influx of Venezuelans into neighboring countries, including Brazil, Colombia, Ecuador, Peru, and Trinidad and Tobago, in recent months. Economic conditions inside Venezuela, characterized by hyperinflation, continue to worsen. The UN estimates that 4.3 million Venezuelans have left the country since 2014, with displacement projected to continue during 2019.

The population influx is straining the capacity of services, particularly in border areas of Brazil and Colombia. Recent assessments indicate food, health care services, nutrition assistance, and WASH support are among the most urgent humanitarian needs of Venezuelans and host communities in border regions.

USAID/OFDA is supporting the Venezuela complex emergency regional response. Please visit our web page for additional information.

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Last updated: September 18, 2019

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