Brazil; Colombia; Ecuador; Peru; Venezuela
The United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees (UNHCR) reported that as of November 2019, some 4.6 million Venezuelans have migrated from Venezuela into neighboring countries due to the dire economic circumstances created by the Maduro regime and this number only continues to rise. The tense situation has created a complex and challenging information environment in these countries that host such large numbers of Venezuelan migrants. As the migration of millions of Venezuelans strains local community resources, fear and xenophobia are reportedly growing, creating tensions in communities and threatening the well-being of Venezuelans in those areas.
There is a serious need to work with regional journalists and prepare them with the tools to objectively address covering these emerging challenges. Embassy Bogota, the ECA TechCamp Team, and our partners Kien Y Ke aim to address these issues, by hosting a regional TechCamp to promote balanced and nuanced reporting on the Venezuelan migration to neighboring countries and an understanding of the support of regional governments and the United States to bear the burden. As the country hosting the largest number of displaced Venezuelans in the region, with more than 1.63 million inside its borders, Colombia is the ideal place to hold a dialogue about the challenges of reporting on the effects of migration. Since 2017, Colombia has also received more than $214 million in U.S. government funding dedicated to meeting the needs of Venezuelans in the region, which has received significant international and national news coverage. All of these factors make Colombia an interesting study for journalists looking to see how the government, private sector, and non-governmental sector have come together to address this issue and how journalists have struggled to appropriately tell the story of Venezuelan migration in the country.