The plight of Jose Luis Jimenez and thousands of other Venezuelans crossing into Colombia underscores the dire situation faced by many as they seek refuge and sustenance amidst Venezuela’s ongoing crisis. The closure of border bridges and the perilous crossing of the Tachira River in search of food, medicine, and basic services highlight the desperate measures some are forced to take to ensure the survival of their families. The communal kitchen La Divina Providencia, supported by UNHCR and the local Catholic Church diocese in Cúcuta, represents a beacon of hope, providing up to 8,000 meals a day to those in need.

This situation is a stark reminder of the broader migration crisis stemming from Venezuela, where over 7 million people have fled since 2015 due to hyperinflation, shortages, political turmoil, violence, and persecution. The crossings, marked by danger from natural hazards and criminal elements, reflect the risks many are willing to take for a chance at safety and a better life.