By: Ashley Jones
For the past 10 days, Women in International Relations have been staying in Bogotá, Colombia. We have had the wonderful experience of meeting so many caring and knowledgeable individuals throughout this trip who has helped us explore the topic of female Venezulan migrants in Colombia. Specifically, for my research question, what are the obstacles faced by pregnant female Venezulan migrants in Colombia in accessing the health care system, it is interesting to understand the relationship between accessibility and information. From what I could gather from the interviews I had, one of the issues being faced by pregnant Venezulan migrants with a temporary protection permit (PPT) was the complexity of the Colombian healthcare system. Most were not aware of what obstetric services they were entitled to due to their PPT. Migrants not being accustomed to the Colombian healthcare system, especially impacted them in insurance of xenophobia in healthcare because they were unsure how to report it.
Other than the interviews we have done here in Colombia, we have had the opportunity to meet several IGL alums while in Bogotá. On our last full day in the city, we were able to meet with Shanti Sattler and Sebastian Chaskel, two alumni living in Bogotá and associated with work being done to help the Venezuelan migrant population in Colombia. It was interesting to talk to them about our findings as well as how Tufts had changed since they attended the university. For the rising seniors on this trip, it was comforting to hear from Sebastian and Shanti about their journeys after Tufts and how being flexible is necessary. Overall, this research trip was a great experience! I was able to not only learn so much about the ongoing obstacles faced by Venezulan migrants but expand my research skills and get to bond with so many wonderful people. I want to thank the IGL for sponsoring this once-in-a-lifetime experience.