Betancourt Relief Fund

If you have been watching the news, you know that Venezuela is hurting. Because of an oppressive, corrupt government, resources are scarce and prices have skyrocketed on the black market. Many good, hard-working people cannot feed their families. To put it in perspective: most Venezuelans earn $200 a month and a loaf of bread costs $15! People are starving since food and basic necessities are unaffordable. Medicine is scarce and worst of all, the ability to receive adequate medical care is next to impossible. Overcrowded hospitals are leaving doctors with no other option than to practice frontline-type medicine where only those most likely to survive are treated.  

Despite these hardships, 37 year old Marvin Betancourt and her husband, Jose, were able to build a life for themselves, their 8 year old son, and were happily 8 months pregnant with their 2nd child. Then Marvin went to the hospital in late November with preeclampsia. Marvin had developed HELLP Syndrome and after 2 days in the hospital, the baby passed away. Marvin was then transferred to the intensive care unit where she stayed all through the holiday season. Marvin Betancourt passed away on January 2nd of respiratory failure. 

Who knows if the end picture would be the same if Marvin would have had access to the kind of medical care afforded in the U.S.? At the end of the day, what does matter is that there is a father and son mourning not only the loss of the baby they planned for, but now the loss of their wife and mother.

To make matters worse the family received a bill for over 4000 US dollars to cover the medical expenses for their dead loved ones and were given only 2 weeks to pay it. If left unpaid, Marvin’s husband will be thrown in jail, leaving their 8 year old son without a parent to raise him.

Her sister, Merlyn Betancourt, and the rest of the family has been seeking ways to come up with this money.  Even if they sell their own homes (leaving them homeless) it wouldn’t equal the $4000 owed.  Let us alleviate this tremendous financial burden to allow Merlyn to mourn the loss of her sister, and Jose to focus on comforting his son.

We met Merlyn when we were missionaries in Venezuela in 2001 and have stayed close friends.  All funds will be sent directly to her to help pay the family medical bills.

Donations ()

  • Johnathan West 
    • $100 
    • 14 mos
  • Steve Rogers 
    • $40 
    • 28 mos
  • Anonymous 
    • $100 
    • 28 mos
  • Kirsten Rogers 
    • $50 
    • 28 mos
  • Kristen Duarte 
    • $50 
    • 28 mos
See all


Erin Dalia-Sanofsky 
Houston, TX
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