The program will facilitate access to formal employment and income-generating opportunities through vocational and business training, language courses and training.
The United States Agency for International Development (USAID) and the International Organization for Migration (IOM) announced, today on January 28, an Economic Integration of Vulnerable Nationals from Venezuela in Brazil Program. The Program includes approximately $4 million in funding, $2 million not previously announced. USAID’s Deputy Administrator for Latin America and the Caribbean John Barsa, Department of State Deputy Assistant Secretary for Western Hemisphere Affairs Carrie Filipetti, the U.S. Mission’s Chargé d’Affaires William Popp and IOM’s Brazil Chief of Mission Stéphane Rostiaux and Oportunidades Project Director Michelle Barron, Deputy Humanitarian Coordinator for Operation Welcome, Colonel Kanaan, and Verónica Sanchez of the Casa Civil. After the official launch, the representatives unveiled an exhibit dedicated to Venezuelan people and their experiences as migrants.
“Countries across Latin America and the Caribbean are dealing with the effects of the man-made crisis in Venezuela. The Government of Brazil and the Brazilian people have demonstrated their warm generosity in assisting Venezuelans in their time of need. This USAID-funded project will support Brazil’s efforts by providing vulnerable Venezuelans with skills necessary to successfully integrate into local communities,” commented USAID Assistant Administrator Barsa about the initiative.
“Economic integration is the lasting solution for Venezuelan people who wish to stay in Brazil to restart their lives independently. With the Oportunidades Project, we want to favor and expand this process and facilitate the access of this population to the formal labor market and income generation opportunities, in addition to strengthening ties with the private sector,” said IOM’s Stéphane Rostiaux.
This development program will focus on providing Venezuelans in Brazil access to sustainable livelihoods and employment opportunities, through activities such as vocational training, language training, and job placement activities primarily in the Federal District, Paraná, Rio de Janeiro, São Paulo, Rio Grande do Sul and Santa Catarina. This development funding is in addition to the nearly $15 million that USAID has provided to date to support life-saving humanitarian assistance for vulnerable Venezuelans in Brazil.
Since FY2017, the United States is providing more than $656 million in humanitarian and development funding to help Venezuelans affected by the ongoing political and economic crisis, both inside Venezuela and in 16 neighboring countries. The USAID-funded program will also complement the Government of Brazil’s broader interiorization program, which is helping vulnerable Venezuelans reunite across the country and find longer-term opportunities for social and economic integration in Brazil.
The United States remains unwavering in its commitment to the people of Venezuela, Interim President Guaidó, and the National Assembly as they fight for the full return of citizen-responsive democracy and the rule of law through free and fair elections. This is the only way to re-establish the peace and prosperity the people of Venezuela so rightly deserve.