The Megumi orphanage for girls is located in Santa Cruz, Bolivia. It was founded in 2004 by a Japanese missionary, Hideko Sugitani. Hideko served as a missionary in Santa Cruz for a number of years before founding the home and then returning to Japan to be married.
Megumi is the Japanese word for "blessing" and it was Hideko's desire to be a blessing to orphaned girls and teach them to be a blessing to others. Our main focus at Megumi is to provide a homelike atmosphere where orphaned girls can be taught the love of Jesus and learn to live a life that is honouring to Him.
Maria Rene de Perez worked with Hideko to establish the home and has acted as the administrator since Hideko left the country. Rene and her husband Rafahel live next door to Megumi and act as dad and mom to the girls. They have a tremendous ministry and influence with the girls and we are thrilled to watch girls who have been with us since 2004 blossom into responsable, loving, young women.
There are currently 14 girls living at Megumi ranging in age from 5 years old to 18 years old. We encourage the girls to study hard and there are two girls now studying in the university as well as one girl about to graduate from Bible College. We are proud of these young ladies and are convinced that God has something special prepared for them.
The girls attend Emmanuel Baptist Church which is just a couple of blocks away from the home and are active as Sunday school helpers and teachers and are involved in other ministries in the church as well. Their enthusiasm is a tremendous blessing to the entire congregation.
Since 2007 Sharon Wiebe, a missionary with BIMI since 1993, has been the director of the home. She works together with Rafahel and Rene Perez providing stability and accountability for the Megumi ministry.
Megumi relies entirely on donations for operations from month to month. We have seen God do some amazing things for the girls and continue to trust Him to meet our needs.