Hello to all of our wonderful supporters and host families from sunny south Florida! Our team has spent most of the past month in Georgia and all across the state of Florida, and we love it! The sunshine, heat, and even daily showers remind our Choir members of the weather in Uganda, where they live right on the equator, and it is a welcome reminder of home. We’ve recently had some exciting trips, some great concerts, and some really encouraging insights…
Succeeding in school
Lead teacher, Uncle Josh, has been really encouraged by the strides our Choir children are making on their studies. From multiplication and division, to spelling and sentence structure, he loves to see their progress, especially when he sees the children take a real interest in self-directing their education. He recounts that some of the Choir children will pull out vocabulary cards on the bus or write math quizzes for each other. “There’s nothing better than kids being self-motivated to learn. That’s the pinnacle of what I aim for as a teacher, so any time they’re seeking out a chance to practice their multiplication or whatever subject it is, it’s neat to see.”
Auntie Janet at Oak Grove United Methodist Church in Decatur, GA, blessed our team with tickets to visit to Six Flags Over Georgia. It was the team’s first visit to a theme park, and they loved going on some of their first loop-de-loop rides, with cool names like “Ninja” “SUPERMAN” and the “Mind Bender.” One of the most rewarding things about being able to bring our Choir children on tour is the opportunity to “let kids be kids” and eat jumbo hot dogs, throw their hands in the air on roller-coaster rides, and enjoy the thrill of the moment.
On another really cool trip the children posed with life-size creations at LEGOLAND. We are blown away by host families such as the one in Peachtree, Georgia, that gifted our entire team with the tickets to explore this fascinating place of wonder and creativity! The children even got to experience their first ever 4D show, and had a chance to ride on a flight simulation that even blew the wind through their hair!
We’re bringing Africa straight to your students!
Choir 40 is collaborating with a number of schools. Workshops with the African Children’s Choir are a great way to not only bless our programs in Africa, but also to interact with the Choir children on a more personal basis. The children share more of their stories, perform songs for students their age, and often teach a song and drumming pattern. Did you know you are able to book the Choir to do a workshop at your school? We even have an Africa-based school curriculum to prepare your students for our arrival and expose them to an entirely different culture, first in class, and then in person! To find out more, simply email firstname.lastname@example.org and ask about our workshop info and availability.
At a concert in Albany, Georgia, Choir 40 was surprised by a visit from American Idol, Season 11 winner- Philip Philips, and had a blast getting to know his story, spend some time with him, and even perform a couple of songs for him the following day. We’ve had the honor of performing alongside some very notable artists in the Choir’s history, and to be recognized by fellow artists who are also believers and walking in their faith is a great boost for our team!
Holidays on the Horizon!
Rehearsals are in full swing for our upcoming Christmas Tour: An African Christmas with the African Children’s Choir. The Children’s repertoire will include such anticipated Carols as Silent Night, Do you Hear What I hear? And Joy to the World, as well as a good mix of new Christmas songs and dances in Luganda. See a list of the Choir’s upcoming concerts, and be sure to mark your calendar for this winter.
If you haven’t read enough yet, click here for a great on-line article that was posted about the Choir, and features an interview with Auntie Dorothy:
All in the family – Our inspiration of the month.
The extent of the African Children’s Choir family reach is far and wide. When we have the opportunity to visit churches where we are hosted by former chaperones, the taste of a little bit of “home on the road” is so refreshing for our team. Choir 40 was thrilled to have a visit to Killearn United Methodist in Tallahassee, Florida, where they were warmly welcomed by all and spent time with two-time former chaperone Jamie Kocur (Choirs 25 and 27). Auntie Katherine was thrilled to tell our offices that “So many people kept coming in that the pastor delayed the start of the concert by 10 minutes so everyone could get a seat. They kept adding rows and bringing in more chairs!”
Knowing what life on the road can be like, Jamie and her husband planned a “staff night in” for our beloved chaperones to relax and spend time together, and they were so grateful to be served a nice dinner and watch a movie with no responsibilities other than to enjoy themselves!
Over and over, we have seen that the small, thoughtful things that folks do for us on tour-whether a kind note, or ride to the post office, or a donation for items on our team’s Wish List, encourage us tremendously and remind us of just how many are in our family, walking alongside us in this journey.
Ultimately, our hearts are for the Choir children, and the many thousands of children they represent across Africa. Children who live in homes with dirt floors with no running water. Children who are turned away from school when they cannot afford to buy their school uniforms. Children who stay home from school to watch younger siblings because their parents work hard from sun-up to sun-down just to earn enough to provide for the next day. Together- we are providing a new reality. The reality of an education and the hope for tomorrow’s success.
None of this is possible without the hope we have in Jesus and His love for all of his children, everywhere.
Now to Him who is able to do immeasurably more than all we ask or imagine, according to His power that is at work within us, to Him be glory in the church and in Christ Jesus throughout all generations, for ever and ever! Amen. – Ephesians 3:20-21
May you be blessed as you continue to bless,
Auntie Molly for Choir 40