International supermodel and actress Patricia Velásquez is mostly known for her role in “The Mummy” movies, but she has acted in numerous other films and television shows. While the Venezuelan star has had a prolific acting career, she feels her most important achievement is the humanitarian and philanthropic work she has been doing through her Wayúu Taya Foundation, which she created in 2002.
As the pandemic rages on worldwide, Velásquez, whose mother is Wayúu and she identifies as such, is very worried about the Venezuelan indigenous community, vulnerable to the coronavirus.
“The indigenous communities, and in this case the Wayúu communities that are on the border, are being hit very hard, because they live close to a point of entry used by a lot of people returning to the country,” says Velásquez. “They live in remote areas, where there is limited access to tests and medicine. So there is a feeling that you have to take care of yourself, you have to have a mask. You have to take care of yourself as much as you can, because if you get sick you won’t be able to get the necessary care.”
The star, whose foundation provides education, nutrition and health resources for the Wayúu, is now on a mission to send as many masks as possible to help the community protect itself during the pandemic. So, she launched a special mask initiative.
“We started producing masks to send to Venezuela. So, if you buy a mask for yourself, you’ll also be giving one to an indigenous child,” she says. “We have already bought and sent hundreds, but we need to send many more. Our foundation feeds about 12,000 people. So you can imagine how many more masks we need to produce and send.”
Velásquez, who has a few acting projects on hold due to the pandemic, has been staying “safe at home” in Los Angeles and following recommended safety protocols, but that hasn’t stopped her from continuing her humanitarian work.
“This difficult time has made me appreciate many things. I’m grateful for my health, for my family and for everyone who helps the foundation,” she says.
Her Wayúu Taya mask initiative is something simple that can go a long way.
“It’s amazing, but with just a dollar, you can help save a child’s life. That’s why I try to cultivate gratitude. Yes, I enjoy my life as an actress, but the foundation is so important to me, because I see all the work that is being done and how effective it is. That’s a reason to be grateful.”
Source: Forbes – Business