The “S” has really hit the fan in Venezuela. The economy has collapsed and millions of Venezuelans have fled the country to seek a better life. As food and access to healthcare have become scarce, once-eradicated diseases like cholera and malaria have returned, and children are dying due to hunger and malnutrition. More and more people are turning to violence as a political uprising continues to undermine the nation’s leadership.
With America facing several conflicts of its own, the ongoing crisis in Venezuela offers valuable lessons for all preppers. These two survival lessons, in particular, will come in handy as you prepare for when SHTF in America: (h/t to TheOrganicPrepper.com)
Alternative medicine a lifesaver
Jose Martinez, who hails from Venezuela but has now migrated to another country following the political and civil unrest in the former, revealed his struggles as a prepper hounded with a physical impediment.
“These last few days I’ve [had] to rely heavily on my ex-wife even for getting some food, as I can’t walk comfortably out of my rented room,” he wrote in the blog the Organic Prepper.
Martinez used to lead a comfortable life in Venezuela. He used to work in the once-thriving oil industry, which made Venezuela one of the richest countries in Latin America until a steady decline in oil production in the 2000s dramatically reduced the nation’s oil reserves.
His health troubles were compounded by the poor healthcare system in his home country. In 2016, he wrote, it was difficult to find antibiotics, analgesics and other medicines, and getting proper treatments or surgeries was a challenge. He underscored the importance of alternative medicine.
“That’s why it becomes so important to look for natural, organic ways to treat some illnesses,” said Martinez.
If you’re young, medical conditions like Type 2 diabetes and cardiovascular disease seem so far-off into the future that you fail to give them some thought. But when you reach a certain age, you’ll become aware of your limitations as your risk of diseases becomes higher and your body becomes less cooperative. That can be debilitating to you as a prepper, especially as prepping and survival requires a lot of moving around.
So when plotting your emergency plan, Martinez said, don’t forget to include solutions to potential health setbacks.
Prepare for violence
As political rule continues to weaken in Venezuela, violence has become increasingly rampant. Martinez said he encountered a lot of acid attack victims and heard stories about young men in Venezuela’s capital, Caracas, who were shot in front of their parents while robbers hooted as they fled.
There’s chaos too in the migrants’ new countries. Martinez read news of his countrymen getting lynched by an angry mob in the provinces outside Lima in Peru. Some of the attackers simply wanted to snatch the Venezuelan men’s girlfriends, according to Martinez. There were also cases of looting and violence in Ecuador, where over 350,000 Venezuelans have settled since 2016.
“[The] attitude ‘That can’t happen here’ or ‘That will not happen to us’ is long gone in my survival manual, trust me,” added Martinez. (Related: 5 Ways to survive when society descends into chaos.)
Peace is rare in a collapsed society, so you have to prepare for potential threats. When SHTF, a lot of people will become desperate for food and shelter and will do anything just to survive. You’re a target as a prepper, so if you’re bugging in, it’s important to keep your home hidden and maintain a low profile. If you’re bugging out to a secret hideout, the challenge is how you’ll get there. Plan accordingly and keep these two survival lessons in mind.