Monday, 28 October 2013

A night I'll never forget...

My reaction to their entrance totally surprised me. Ava and I were seated about half way back, and we had a good view of the children entering. Their voices were raised in song... beautiful harmonies, beaming smiles, faces of hope. And the tears just started flowing.

The concert had lasted a mere ten seconds and already I was streaming.

The tears didn't last long. How could they? When these children, who know hardship better than my children probably ever will, were singing with such expressions of joy and hope. We heard their stories; many growing up without parents, living in one room houses with up to ten other children, walking miles for water with no prospects or education. And yet they stood on that stage and told us what they wanted to grow up to be: a pilot, a teacher, an eye-doctor, a lawyer, a midwife... the President of Uganda! Why do they have such hope? What chance of fulfilling these aspirations do they really have?

The answer is simple: The African Children's Choir.

Since 1984, the African Children's Choir has raised awareness of the needs of poverty-stricken and orphaned children in Africa by touring with young children aged between 7 and 11 years. Their beautiful voices sing out on behalf of Africa's 12 million AIDS orphans as they seek to raise funds for the continued development of the Choir's relief programmes which care for the children's physical, educational and spiritual needs. Once children have finished a concert tour, they are able to return home and continue, with their brothers and sisters, into education, supported and sponsored by the programme. It is a wonderful gift.

Ava and I were riveted for the entire performance. She sat on my lap, literally squealing with delight, her  two year old mind soaking in the voices, drum beats and incredibly rhythmic dancing of the children. Sometimes she couldn't resist and would clamber off my lap to have a little dance and clap of her own. She was mesmerised. As the charity so beautiful puts it "in spite of the tragedy that has marred their young lives, these musically gifted children are wonderfully entertaining. They melt the hearts of audiences with their charming smiles and joyful African melodies and dance."

It was an evening I'll never forget.

You can see where the choir are performing on the remainder of their tour here... Why not have a look if they're heading in your direction? I can promise you, it will be an evening you won't regret...

You can find out more about the Choir and how to support them here.

In the meantime, I'll leave you with them and Gary Barlow performing "Sing!" last year...

1 comment:

  1. I bet you had a wonderful time, a great event. Mich x


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