Between opulence and poverty

Avatar Pao Suárez
Member since February 13, 2014
  • 31 Posts
  • Age 23

Hi everyone!, if you´ve read any of my posts you might already know I live in Chile but I am Colombian. This week's post topic brought me back to the harsh inequality reality highly present here but a lot more directly noticeable there back in my country. Since I am not there I´m not going to portrait a particular case but I will introduce you to 2 different realities coexisting at a bare minimum distance.

So I´m from Barranquilla, where it´s summer all year long pretty much. There are 3 “top seashore” sites in Colombia - Santa Marta, Barranquilla and Cartagena and they are separated by a 2 hour trip - by car. They are beautiful cities, visited all year long because of the food, exotic biodiversity, gorgeous beaches, historic heritages and much more. There are all kinds of places to go and celebrations to attend that any time of the year is a good time to visit any of those cities. However for all of us who´ve had the joy of being in Cartagena, have also had the sorrow to face the top VIP buildings, clubs and hotels being built meters away from slums…As if we are in the middle of two completely different cities but we are just witnessing the two sides of an unfair coin...

One side of the coin holds children who study at the most expensive schools, speak at least 3 languages by the time they graduate from high school and get their drivers license as young as possible so they can use one of their parent’s car - kids whose only responsibility is to take as many selfies as it is humanly possible.

But meters away, on the other side of the same place live children in houses made of trash, who wear the same clothes for moths until they don’t fit or are damaged…Kids who struggle every day to get food ONCE a day, children that survive by the alms received, and that carry upon their shoulders in most cases the responsibility to look after their sick caregivers or respond to abusive parents, and bring “enough” money to feed several siblings, (they don’t family plan whatsoever) … in other words , kids born to die rich and kids born to die starving.

Now what I´m describing isn´t shocking at any level in most countries worldwide, but when the sights I get allow me to see the two sides of the coin great sadness invades me and generates a disgust to know I belong to a society with many humans with so little humanity.

I could go on and on describing this sad reality or talk about the never-ending list of examples of unequal “coins” all over Colombia but I´m hoping the words I wrote and the pictures I share are strong enough to make you indignant you as well. What I want to do by talking about this is obviously to raise awareness, because something like this is most likely to be happening anywhere you are living.

But I also want to spread a message - we can change things. Any one person or organization can´t by itself change such a strong reality as inequality, but society can certainly decrease the impact of this scenario. Young people can get involved in doing so, in ways as simple as buying responsibly, saving to donate or advocating…or as complex as planning meetings to address / design strategies that help fight inequality and by doing so saving lives. Any kind of help is well received and it is worth a life experience that enriches our consciousness and helps others but most importantly that drives decision makers to endorse and enforce ways to protect people and fight inequality through law. Both Colombia and Chile continue to be top unequal countries but we can help diminish it. Here where I am, there where you are…worldwide.

If you would like to know more about what you can do to change this check the link below: From the Frontlines, Change not charity.

Thank you very much for reading!

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