As refugees have continued to flee the humanitarian crisis in neighboring Venezuela, Colombian officials have opened an office in eastern city of Bucaramanga, operated by the local government, to provide aid and assistance. In only the first several days that the office has been open, more than 600 Venezuelans have received help.
“Any Venezuelan citizen is welcome to come to the Northern Hospital in Bucaramanga and receive healthcare for emergencies. Likewise, people who arrive with children younger than five years old can receive attention at Bienestar Familiar daycare centers”, said Amparo Hurtado, director of the office for the attention of foreigners.
Hurtado said that school age Venezuelan children will also receive public education at no cost in Colombia.
“Minors of school age can also attend classes. We are doing what we can, what we have, we will offer it. There are also recreation programs to which they can have access. We do not offer housing, however”.
Rodolfo Hernández, Mayor of Bucaramanga will symbolically designate ten Venezuelans as employees, charged with taking care and maintaining the city’s parks.
Colombia has taken in more than 300,000 refugees since the crisis began in Venezuela.