With average wages less than the equivalent of $50 a month at black market rates there is an increase in parents handing children over to the state, charities or friends and family. [9 photos total]

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1
Zulay Pulgar (C), 43, rest in a coffee shop with her son Emmanuel, 4, after standing in line to buy cement in a hardware store in Punto Fijo, Venezuela. The family lives on Pulgar's father's pension, worth $6 a month at the black market rate, in a country where prices for many basic goods are surpassing those in the United States."It's better that she has another family than go into prostitution, drugs or die of hunger," the 43-year-old unemployed mother said, sitting outside her dilapidated home with her five-year-old son, father and unemployed husband. (REUTERS/Carlos Garcia Rawlins) #
2
Zulay Pulgar (R), 43, holds her son Emmanuel, 4, next to her husband Maikel Cuauro (L), 30, and her father Juan Pulgar, 73, while they pose for a portrait in their house in Punto Fijo, Venezuela. Struggling to feed herself and her seven children, Venezuelan mother Zulay Pulgar asked a neighbor in October to take over care of her six-year-old daughter, a victim of a pummeling economic crisis. (REUTERS/Carlos Garcia Rawlins) #
3
Zulay Pulgar (C), 43, stands in line outside a hardware store, next to her son Emmanuel, to buy cement and resell it in Punto Fijo, Venezuela.Pulgar said just one chicken meal would now burn up half its monthly income. Breakfast is often just bread and coffee, with rice alone for both lunch and dinner. (REUTERS/Carlos Garcia Rawlins) #
4
Zulay Pulgar, 43, cooks a meal in her house in Punto Fijo, Venezuela. Every day at the social services center in Carirubana, which oversees Pulgar's case, more than a dozen parents plead for help taking care of their children in this isolated, arid corner of Venezuela with a shaky water supply and little food. (REUTERS/Carlos Garcia Rawlins) #
5
Juan Pulgar, 73, holds a picture of himself taken about a year ago, as he poses for a portrait in his house in Punto Fijo, Venezuela. (REUTERS/Carlos Garcia Rawlins) #
6
Zulay Pulgar (C), 43, gives Venezuelan bolivar notes to her husband Maikel Cuauro, 30, in their house in Punto Fijo, Venezuela. (REUTERS/Carlos Garcia Rawlins) #
7
Juan Pulgar, 73, sits in a chair as he rests in his house in Punto Fijo, Venezuela. (REUTERS/Carlos Garcia Rawlins) #
8
Emmanuel Cuauro, plays with a ball next to his parents Zulay Pulgar (R), 43, and Maikel Cuauro, 30, in their house in Punto Fijo, Venezuela. (REUTERS/Carlos Garcia Rawlins) #
9
Emmanuel Cuauro, sits on the sidewalk next to his mother Zulay Pulgar, as they make a line outside the hardware store to buy cement and re-sell it in Punto Fijo, Venezuela. (REUTERS/Carlos Garcia Rawlins) #

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