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Helping At Megumi Project

February 2016

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When Andy and Lorna Gilbert had to make a sudden one month visit to aging parents in the US, they left their missionary staff in Onagawa to supervise the kimono craft making ladies at the trailer and their new store at the Promenade. So they asked us if we could help out for a few days in their absence. We found room in our schedule and went north for the better part of one week to help.

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The missionary staff probably didn’t need us at all! But we enjoyed three days with them. Ann helped the ladies at the trailer by ripping out seams of donated kimono for various projects and naming a few products to sell on the Megumi Project website. Dale did some maintenance on a small motor home that has been used by Megumi Project over the past several years.

We learned how to sell Megumi Project items at their new store in the new Onagawa Promenade. The store also sells other crafts made by people in the town. It was fun working in the store for one day.

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And then we invited the Megumi Project missionary staff to our vacation house in Takayama (Shichigahama Town) for one day to get away from the busyness of ministry in Onagawa. It was a little sabbath for them.

Megumi Project Final EFCCM Gift

January 2016

In Dec 2013, we applied over CAN$30,000 from the EFCCM Japan Disaster Fund to Onagawa Megumi Project to help with the construction of their handicraft trailer.  

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In Jan 2016 we applied the remaining approximately CAN$14,500 from that Fund to Megumi Project for their moving and set up expenses of their new shop on the new promenade in Onagawa, as well as for their relocation of their trailer.

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This completes the EFCCM special financial project for tsunami recovery ministry in northeastern Japan. We are grateful that the Lord continues to use the Onagawa Megumi Project to bring his grace (= “megumi”) and love to a town hit by one of the highest tsunami (30 meters) on March 11, 2011. It is a privilege to continue our involvement with the Megumi Project by visiting and helping out there from time to time.

EFCC Leaders Visit Onagawa

June 2015

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We drove Bill Taylor (EFCC Executive Director) and Melvin Sayer (EFCC Mission Asia Director) through a few tsunami devastated areas of Miyagi-ken on June 9. 

The most significant visit was to Onagawa Town, especially the Onagawa Megumi Project.

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Unknown to us, the Megumi Project had prepared a beautiful handcrafted wall hanging for Bill and Mel, expressing thanks for the EFCCM’s financial contribution toward the purchase of the Project’s trailer. Maybe the Evangelical Free Church of Canada will hang it on a wall in their offices located on the campus of Trinity Western University in greater Vancouver BC Canada!

Reporting About Megumi Project

April - May 2015

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Ann modeling a turtleback from Onagawa Project at Portland Head Light in Cape Elizabeth, Maine

We took a two month home assignment in April and May in order to visit some of our supporting churches in the northeastern US. We reported about our church planting ministry at Tokyo Multicultural Church. But we also talked up the Onagawa Megumi Project. 

During our home assignment we encouraged people in our supporting churches to shop at the Onagawa Megumi Project online store as a way of contributing to this ministry. 

All income goes to the tsunami affected ladies who work at the Project.

Video: Megumi Project Story

December 2014

Megumi Project: a social enterprise in the town of Onagawa, Miyagi-ken. 

This is the Megumi Project story of beauty restored...

Christmas Shopping At Megumi!

December 2014

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In November 2014 the Onagawa Megumi Project opened an online store. Their unique products can be purchased online from Canada or the USA, and make great Christmas presents—especially for ladies. All proceeds go toward helping rebuild the lives of some tsunami survivors in Onagawa.

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The Onagawa Megumi Project is an income generating social enterprise that transforms vintage kimonos into beautiful products. The Megumi Project shares the love of Jesus Christ in a tangible way in the town of Onagawa, Miyagi-ken that was devastated by tsunami generated by the 9.0 magnitude earthquake on March 11, 2011.

The Project is a ReachGlobal and EFC of Germany initiative that the EFC of Canada Mission (EFCCM) is partnering with. The Project received over $30,000 from the EFCCM disaster fund for the construction of their working trailer where they make all their crafts.

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The EFCCM church planting ministry at Tokyo Multicultural Church (TMC), led by Dale and Ann Little, is connected with the Onagawa Megumi Project. TMC is a financial supporter of the Project. In addition, throughout 2014 TMC ladies have prepared kimono fabric for the Project by ripping out the seams of many donated kimonos so the ladies in Onagawa do not have to do that time consuming work.

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Several times in 2014 Dale and Ann delivered the prepared kimono fabric to Onagawa, and offered encouragement to the missionaries and workers there. They will continue to do this from Tokyo in the years to come.

Why not buy some of Onagawa Megumi Project's unique creations for Christmas gifts at their online shop?

EFCCM Disaster Fund

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July 2014

Over the past 10 months we have applied more than CAN$30,000 from the EFCCM Disaster Fund toward the purchase and construction of a “friendship center” trailer in Onagawa Town, Miyagi Prefecture, about one hour north of Sendai City. 

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The ReachGlobal missionary team working there has developed an excellent strategy of combining community rebuilding with gospel proclamation and demonstration. They call their ministry the Onagawa Megumi Project. (Megumi means grace in Japanese.)

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Onagawa was hit by monstrous tsunami tidal waves after the 9.0 magnitude quake on March 11, 2011. The sea rose to about 30 meters or 98 feet, completely destroying the center of the town, including hotels, banks, businesses, and homes. The fatality rate was high—about 10% of the population—and the social fabric was torn apart.

EFCCM Leaders Visit Onagawa

April 2014

EFCCM Leaders Visit Onagawa Megumi Project, April 2014

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On April 1 we dropped by the Onagawa Megumi Project with EFCCM Director Dave Penner and his wife, and with EFCCM Asia Director Mel Sayer.

We met with Andy & Lorna and Chami, who explained the vision and purpose of their Onagawa Megumi Project.

The Onagawa Megumi Project trailer was in place but no porch yet on the front. While we were there the electrician was able to turn on the power!

What a great way to combine gospel proclamation with compassionately rebuilding the social fabric of a tsunami devastated community!

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Inside the trailer (pic above)

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Viewing a video of the vision of Onagawa Megumi Project (pic above)

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Lobby of Onagawa Hospital. The tsunami reached the red line on the pillar behind Mel. The hospital is already 20 meters (63 feet) above sea level - see next pic. (pic above)

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Onagawa Hospital is up on the hill behind tipped over 3 floor building in the foreground. (pic above)

Project Team

December 2013

Onagawa Megumi Project Team

The Lord has brought together a great team to develop this project. They come from Japan, USA, and Germany. Keep them in your prayers!

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L to R: Andy, Chami, Katherine, Lorna, Danielle, Jonathan, Matthias

Megumi Project First EFCCM Gift

December 2013

Onagawa Handicraft Project Trailer House

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The trailer house to be used for the Onagawa cooperative handicraft project has been under construction since early November. The local contractor hopes to complete it by the end of December, but he is making no promises.

Hey, it takes a long time to get things like this done in the tsunami devastated areas of Japan!

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The Onagawa project and the missionaries leading it are helping to rebuild the social fabric of tsunami devastated Onagawa Town—all in the name of Jesus Christ. Tsunami displaced women will be given the opportunity for employment at the trailer house.

Over $30,000 of the EFC of Canada Mission tsunami recovery fund is being used for this trailer house construction project and the handicraft making enterprise that will be housed there. We count it a privilege to partner in this Christ-centered tsunami recovery project.

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The hand made items might include jewelry made from pieces of pottery broken and scattered by the tsunami. Other items such as jewelry bags (pictured at the left) and clothing will be made from kimono material.

You too will be able to partner in this project by buying these items online directly from the Onagawa project website. (dale little)