By Fr. Benedict Mayaki, SJ
As part of efforts to provide support for families hard-hit by the pandemic, Caritas Venezuela, in conjunction with the Venezuelan Bishops’ Conference, has announced that it will deliver approximately twenty tons of food to dioceses throughout the country.
This initiative is part of the “Gesture of Solidarity” campaign promoted by Caritas Venezuela. It aims to provide food aid to families in a situation of nutritional vulnerability in different parish communities, in the face of the trying times experienced by many Venezuelans amid the coronavirus pandemic.
Running from 30 May to 13 June, the national management of Caritas, through its parishes and dioceses, will evaluate and identify people most in need, and ensure that the food aid reaches their homes directly.
Each support kit includes six foodstuffs that weigh about twenty kilograms. Caritas Venezuela aims to provide 800 kits to each diocese and about 20,000 kilograms of food nationwide.
Reaching the most vulnerable
The national director of Caritas, Janeth Márquez, said that in Venezuela’s current economic crisis, it is difficult to identify the most vulnerable. However, she noted that the work of Caritas in parishes has helped find persons and families who are in urgent need.
Calling for support, Márquez invites the business community and other Non-Governmental Organizations to show solidarity. She asks them to give not what they have leftover, but what they have to offer to those who need it, as a matter of urgency.
With this gesture, continued Márquez, “we go out from the Church and we reach out to the needy in their homes…We have to knock on their doors to see what is happening in our country, so that we can, in some way, dialogue with people and listen to not only their joys, but also their problems.”