On Dec. 18, Venezuela President Nicolas Maduro halted his policy from earlier in the week of banning the 100 bolivar currency as the economic situation in the country became even more desperate. And in addition to the growing starvation, riots, and looting that has emerged from the nation's mass inflation, some Venezuelans are having to give away their children as they can no longer afford to feed them amid the economic chaos.
Struggling to feed herself and her seven children, Venezuelan mother Zulay Pulgar asked a neighbor in October to take over care of her six-year-old daughter, a victim of a pummeling economic crisis.
The family lives on Pulgar's father's pension, worth $6 a month at the black market rate, in a country where prices for many basic goods are surpassing those in the United States.
"It's better that she has another family than go into prostitution, drugs or die of hunger," the 43-year-old unemployed mother said, sitting outside her dilapidated home with her five-year-old son, father and unemployed husband.
With average wages less than the equivalent of $50 a month at black market rates, three local councils and four national welfare groups all confirmed an increase in parents handing children over to the state, charities or friends and family.
The government does not release data on the number of parents giving away their children and welfare groups struggle to compile statistics given the ad hoc manner in which parents give away children and local councils collate figures.
Still, the trend highlights Venezuela's fraying social fabric and the heavy toll that a deep recession and soaring inflation are taking on the country with the world's largest oil reserves. - Reuters
Sadly, the people's trust in their socialist government, along with in their fiat currency, is partially to blame why few Venezuelan's were prepared for the quick, and in some cases deadly, effects that escalating high inflation has caused for their nation and economy. And because of the growing loss of confidence in the Bolivar, as well as in access to hard currencies such as the dollar, stories have broken out of those who owned a little gold and silver being able to not only survive this ongoing economic collapse, but actually thrive in it.
Tom Cloud: We got an incredible email this morning from one of our clients who's brother in law is a missionary down in Venezuela. And he was telling us that in Venezuela, once ounce of silver will buy you food for three or four months... one ounce of silver. And an ounce of gold will buy you a house. - The Daily EconomistWhile many Americans believe that what is taking place right now in Venezuela, India, and in Greece over the past six years could ever come to America, then all one needs to do is look back 80 years ago in our history to see what the Great Depression did for a large portion of our citizens following a financial crash that involved stock markets, debt, derivatives, the collapse of a housing bubble, and the overall banking system.
From one perspective, the story emerging from the Great Depression can be described as one of family "disorganization" and deprivation. Marriage rates declined, although they started to rise in 1934, and the trend toward decreasing birthrates, already underway, accelerated during the 1930s. Although divorce rates also declined, this seems to have been largely the consequence of the inability to pay lawyers' fees; desertion rates increased during the decade. In some cases, two or more families crowded together in apartments or homes designed as single-family residences. Some 250,000 youths were on the road, travelling by freight train or hitchhiking in order to find work or more favorable circumstances. From 1929 to 1931, the number of children entering custodial institutions increased by 50 percent. In many economically deprived families, children suffered from malnutrition and inadequate clothing. - IC.Galegroup