Maria and her family thought their struggles had ended when they emigrated from Venezuela, but they continue live in dire conditions in the Colombian border city of Cucuta, as a report from Friday indicates.
Maria lives in a small house with her husband and two daughters, aged 8 and 11, where they sleep on the floor. They reportedly have no access to drinking water, gas, or medicine.
Their rent... Еще amounts to 8,000 Colombian pesos (€2.17) per day, which takes up almost their entire earnings, leaving them little or no money for food.
Maria remains surprisingly upbeat, describing her living conditions somewhat ironically as 'adventurous'. She went on to say: «We have come to a country where we have nothing. We left everything behind and we will see how we can continue going forward.»
«In Venezuela you can't even find anything in the rubbish,» she added.
Maria finds solace in her work, which consists of making miniature cars. She explains that «at work I am able to unwind because I like painting quite a lot. I really devote myself to it and forget everything, forget the mundaneness of daily existence.»
Cucuta, which has a population of some 700,000, has been one of the cities worst affected by the migration crisis due to its proximity to the town of Urena in Venezuela, which it is connected to by the Francisco de Paula Santander International Bridge.
According to the UN Refugee Agency and the International Organisation for Migration, Colombia is the leading destination for Venezuelans migrants, with the country hosting as many as 1.3 million people.