Venezuelans Are Trying To Crowdfund Money To Leave The Country

Dozens of accounts have been set up in recent months by Venezuelans on the crowdfunding platform Generosity.

Thousands of people in Venezuela have taken to the streets in protest as opposition groups stage nationwide demonstrations demanding early elections.

Things have gotten so bad now that Venezuelans are turning to crowdfunding platforms to raise enough money so they can leave the country.

BuzzFeed News spoke to three people in Venezuela who said they are hoping to raise enough donations from around the world to leave.

Definitely, Venezuela is the tale of the never ending pit of suffering and repression....

Andrea Gutierrez, a 24-year-old from Maracaibo, told BuzzFeed News in an email that she lost her job because of the worsening economic situation — and is now trying to crowdsource her way to Ecuador.

Gutierrez said she knows others who have been forced to busk to make money. She said she began researching ways to get international help and found the Generosity website.

Generosity is an offshoot of Indiegogo, founded in 2015, which allows people to raise money for themselves, their families, or charitable causes. Unlike Indiegogo, it is free to use, so people get all the money given to them. (BuzzFeed News has reached out to Generosity for comment.)

"I'm glad I did because saving money in Venezuela's current status is just impossible," she said, "and I do really want to get a second chance so I can live, work hard for my goals in music and art, and also get to help my parents, who are elderly and in delicate health condition."

Gutierrez told BuzzFeed News she's "always had the dream of traveling overseas for a better capacity of music and arts" but that the worsening situation in Venezuela has held her back until now.

But Gutierrez unfortunately isn't the only one desperately trying to raise funds to leave Venezuela.

In Venezuela, a basic salary right now is about $15 per month. An average Venezuelan would have to save up (without eating or spending anything) for almost two years to cover the cost of a passport, visa, and a plane ticket.

For some, crowdfunding has already helped.

For others it's more of a struggle. Eligreg López, a writer from Ciudad Ojeda, Venezuela, started crowdfunding when she was pregnant because she wanted to make sure her baby got the best care possible.

Estoy pelando, trabajaba por internet y se me quemó la laptop, se me acabó la comida y peligra la leche de Elías. G… https://t.co/Ba0P6SIHRG

"I’m dying, I work on the internet and my computer broke, I run out of food and Elias’s milk is jeopardized. Thanks a lot," she wrote in a tweet with her PayPal information.

López's son is now 13 months old and López and her husband are hoping to raise enough money to leave Venezuela.

"We want to raise our family in a peaceful environment and let our parents live their elder years in the quiet they deserve," she said. "We know that working online is our way out of the Venezuelan chaos. We know this country won't be fixed from night to day."

"We want a better future for us than the one we see here in Venezuela," López said.