- Living on Less Than $2/day 39% 39%
- Roman Catholic 76.8% 76.8%
- Evangelical & Pentecostal 8.1% 8.1%
- Protestant 7.9% 7.9%
- Other 1.5% 1.5%
- None 5.5% 5.5%
EFM entered the mountainous country of Bolivia in 1978. Our work there has been primarily among the Aymara Indians of the highlands. About twenty churches have been established, some in very remote mountain areas, and a Bible institute is training Christian workers.
Stephen and Yvonne DeLong moved to the country in January 2018 and are working there as missionaries.
Stephen & Yvonne Delong
Stephen and Yvonne DeLong are currently serving as full time missionaries with EFM in the country of Bolivia. They are overseeing the ministry and working in the area of leadership development.
They currently have three children living: Hannah, Daniel, and Jonathan. One child, Joanna, went home to be with Jesus in 2009.
Bolivia is a resource rich country with strong growth attributed to captive markets for natural gas exports to Brazil and Argentina. However, the country remains one of the least developed countries in Latin America because of state-oriented policies that deter investment and growth.
Following a disastrous economic crisis during the early 1980s, reforms spurred private investment, stimulated economic growth, and cut poverty rates in the 1990s. The period 2003-05 was characterized by political instability, racial tensions, and violent protests against plans – subsequently abandoned – to export Bolivia’s newly discovered natural gas reserves to large Northern Hemisphere markets. In 2005, the government passed a controversial hydrocarbons law that imposed significantly higher royalties and required foreign firms then operating under risk-sharing contracts to surrender all production to the state energy company in exchange for a predetermined service fee. High commodity prices between 2010 and 2014 sustained rapid growth and large trade surpluses. The global decline in oil prices that began in late 2014 exerted downward pressure on the price Bolivia receives for exported gas and resulted in lower GDP growth rates – declining from 4.9% in 2015 to 4.2% in 2017 – and losses in government revenue as well as fiscal and trade deficits.
A lack of foreign investment in the key sectors of mining and hydrocarbons, along with conflict among social groups, pose challenges for the Bolivian economy. In 2015, in an attempt to improve the investment climate, President Evo MORALES expanded efforts to court international investment and boost Bolivia’s energy production capacity, passing an investment law and promising not to nationalize additional industries. In early 2016, the Government of Bolivia approved the 2016-20 National Economic and Social Development Plan aimed at maintaining growth of 5% and reducing poverty.
– Information provided by CIA World Factbook