Help Yenibel Recover from Robbery


While in Colombia filming a documentary, Yenibel Ruiz was robbed at gunpoint; she needs your help to recover her financial losses.

Yenibel is creating a documentary film to analyze and highlight the plight of Venezuelan refugees and migrants who are fleeing their country’s humanitarian crisis by crossing the border into neighboring Colombia. This film will contribute to an essential documentation of Venezuelans’ plight during this painful time in their history. This is a project that has pressing political repercussions, historical and academic relevance, and intimate connection to Yenibel, who is from Venezuela, and to her family, who still live in the country.

To create this film, Yenibel traveled to Santa Marta, Colombia in July 2017 to interview Venezuelan migrants and film their stories. She then traveled to Venezuela for a week where she was able to visit her family and witness the period of crisis and protests leading up to country’s summer political referendum.

With the interviewing and filming portion of her project complete, Yenibel is back in Texas and ready to begin editing and producing her film.

She is determined to tell this story. And she needs your help.

What happened:

In the last week of her two-month stay in Santa Marta, Yenibel was assaulted and robbed at gunpoint. Her assailant took her film bag, which contained her camera, camera lenses, cell phone, wallet, reporting notes, batteries, and memory cards. The local Santa Marta newspaper published her report of the event, which you can read here (in Spanish).

This assault was emotionally traumatic. It also left her in a financial bind: her plan had been to sell her camera equipment once she returned to the US. She planned to use that money to help pay for this fall’s tuition and rent as well as to recuperate the costs of her travels.

What she needs:

$4000. Yenibel had hoped she could find a way to financially support herself and recuperate her losses from the robbery. It’s been a month since her return, and it’s become clear that the expense, both emotional and financial, is too big. She’s come to accept that it’s time to ask for help.  

Estimated costs and timeline:

Yenibel lost $3400 worth of equipment: $1400 for the camera, $1500 in lenses, and $500 in memory cards, a microphone, and a voice recorder.  

Yenibel hopes to raise this money by November 15th, when fall tuition is due.

This Go Fund Me campaign was created by Yenibel's friend Sarah, in Austin, Texas, in hopes that Yenibel's community here in the US and around the world can help her, her film project, and her financial recovery in any way, big or small. 


 See top
  • Efren Medina 
    • $150 
    • 41 mos
  • Anonymous 
    • $30 
    • 42 mos
  • Abdullah Alqahtani 
    • $300 
    • 42 mos
  • Abdulmoez Al Ismaeel  
    • $500 
    • 42 mos
  • Ufuk Koroglu 
    • $50 
    • 42 mos
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Organizer and beneficiary

Sarah Kennedy 
Austin, TX
Yenibel Ruiz 
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