Many Latinxs are glued to their social media and the latest news in a desperate attempt to get updates from Venezuela ?? Gente from this South American country are fighting for survival in a place where food and water are scarce, most independent media has folded and chaos abounds.

Unrest in Venezuela / AP News

When communication was all but gone, some Venezuelans ?? began using Zello, a push-to-talk voice messaging app that works like a walkie-talkie. Through the Venezuelan channel, Venezuela Hasta Los Tuétanos, people stay updated on the latest political, social, economic and humanitarian situation.

Unrest in Venezuela / AP News

The channel has become a lifeline in a country where the government has blocked aid and is making arbitrary arrests ? The 24/7 channel is said to have 70,000 subscribers and on average there are up to 2,000 listeners at any given time.

Zello used during Venezuelan protests / IB News

Users can communicate in real time over any wireless or data network to share updates. It has helped people keep children home from school on days the government is making arrests. It has likely saved lives by warning protesters when armed forces are headed their way. Information can be exchanged anonymously and free from possible retaliation.

With technology increasingly becoming a necessary means of communication across the world, we’re glad to know it’s helping those in Venezuela as much as possible.