In a coordinated humanitarian effort between Goya Foods, the largest Hispanic-owned food company in the United States; the Venezuelan Embassy in the United States; and national and international humanitarian agencies, 220,000 pounds of food were delivered to the population of Venezuela that continues to suffer from a serious food shortage as a consequence of the complex humanitarian emergency generated by Nicolás Maduro’s regime.
This is the second installment of a 400,000-pound food donation, which is part of the #GoyaGivesGlobal campaign of the US company and made possible thanks to the assistance of the Venezuelan Embassy in the United States, humanitarian agencies and charities.
“We are here to return the blessings we have to our Venezuelan brothers. The humanitarian aid we offer has been accepted by many states except Venezuela. I do not understand why refuse the aid that goes to the people, for me that is a crime against humanity. We have given our brothers the fruit of our work and it has been difficult to get there, but thanks to the help of the ambassador and many people, we have been able to do so. We are very grateful for their help and that of humanitarian organizations in reaching out to the Venezuelan brothers who suffer,” said Bob Unanue, president of Goya Foods.
In times of desperate need Goya has always been at the forefront of disaster relief and relief efforts, providing millions of pounds of food around the world. In September 2019, in response to the claims of starving children and families in Venezuela, Goya committed to a donation of 400,000 pounds, of which 180,000 pounds initially reached people safely with the help of non-profit organizations , churches and charities located in Venezuela.
“We are grateful to Goya and we will always remember its support, its leadership, its family. This aid has been unconditional to address the humanitarian crisis in Venezuela and demonstrates the commitment that an American and Hispanic company has with Latin America and especially with Venezuela. For the interim government of President Juan Guaidó it is a priority to serve Venezuelans who suffer from lack of food, medicine and other basic needs. This important donation of 220,000 pounds of food has been distributed directly in Venezuela by entities specialized in humanitarian aid.” said Carlos Vecchio, Ambassador of the Bolivarian Republic of Venezuela to the United States.
Vecchio recalled that as a result of the crisis generated by the dictator Nicolás Maduro, Venezuela is among the 5 most relevant famines in the world.
“About 9.3 million Venezuelans are food insecure, 2.3 million of them severely food insecure. That means that 1 in 3 Venezuelans today do not have a plate of food on their table, according to UN figures. To survive, a third of the Venezuelan population has agreed to work for food as payment. Others have sold family assets to meet basic needs, or have even spent their savings on food. This is inconceivable.”
He added that 5.4 million Venezuelans have emigrated from the country according to OAS figures, seeking the well-being that Maduro’s dictatorship denies them.
“This situation of famine generated by Maduro adds to the record of human rights violations and crimes against humanity recently confirmed by the United Nations Mission for the Determination of Facts about Venezuela and by the Prosecutor of the International Criminal Court. Humanitarian aid is not enough, that is why help must also be rendered which leads us to free and transparent presidential and parliamentary elections.”
For the ambassador, this makes international action and pressure in support of the Venezuelan people of vital urgency, the world has a “shared responsibility to protect against a criminal dictatorship that now persecutes with more force organizations that try to alleviate the suffering of the Venezuelans. To act now is to avoid a greater tragedy.”
Vecchio invited more national and international companies and organizations to join with initiatives such as the one led by Goya Foods. “Venezuelans will be eternally grateful.”
Through ‘Goya Gives’, a global program committed to promoting the general well-being of communities through social responsibility, environmental initiatives and company values, Goya supports nearly 300 charitable initiatives, scholarships and events each year. Since the start of the pandemic, the company has donated more than 3.5 million pounds of food and 20,000 protective masks.