In response to this week’s civil protests, Chile has declared a state of emergency with curfews announced daily. While there still are reports of protests continuing in several neighborhoods, most of them are concentrated in the downtown areas. In most instances, protests are peaceful. There have been some isolated confrontations during protests taking place after the instituted curfew. At this time, public transportation is generally working, and stores are open. Some supermarkets remain closed, but food is available. All IFSA host families have confirmed that they have sufficient supplies for students.
What IFSA is Doing
The IFSA Resident Director in Valparaiso, Mark Sinclair, and the IFSA Resident Director in Santiago, Isabel Yevenes, and their teams are in contact with students via WhatsApp and other means of communication to provide regular safety updates.
We are requiring students to spend their evenings (the time during the mandated curfew) in their homestays and to not travel until the situation becomes more stable. This will allow IFSA to better support the students logistically and send out updated messages when necessary.
Our host institutions have shared that classes should begin by Monday, October 28.
IFSA continues to monitor the situation closely and we are keeping in regular contact with our students, host families, U.S. Embassy personnel, and local universities. As we receive new information, we will continue to send students regular updates on safety measures to follow and details on the resumption of classes. At this time, IFSA programming for the Spring 2020 programs will continue on schedule as planned.
Our goal is to ensure our students’ wellbeing and safety. We have reminded students to be in contact with their families. We will update this post if needed; in the meantime, please contact us at 800-858-0229 during regular business hours or email us at firstname.lastname@example.org if you have any questions or concerns.