In 1989 the people of Caracas rose up against an austerity programme. Here in the UK we have seen student protests, in Caracas it was a spontaneous protest against bus fares that sparked things off. Eventually a new fairer economic system was introduced as a result of a grassroots and largely unorganised protests. Joel will be touring Britain and I would urge you all to go along and learn about the fight against austerity and the construction of a democratic economy. There is more to Venezuela than Hugo Chavez as well. We have got events in Cambridge, London, Cardiff, Norwich and Sheffield in the pipeline.
Joel Linares is a Venezuelan Christian community activist from a barrio in the west of Caracas, whose work is influenced by Liberation theology. He is a graduate of the Venezuelan government's 'Mision Cultura' programme and is involved in a number of initiatives to promote community participation and development in Caracas and across Venezuela. He is currently doing work for Venezuela's Social Development Bank (BANDES).