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African children's choir brings Beautiful Africa to stage

Several performances in Delta and Surrey this month.
Members of the Watoto Childrens' Choir will be performing in Surrey and Delta

Promo - Beautiful Africa: A New Generation from Watoto on Vimeo.

A choir comprised of African children orphaned by AIDS, war and poverty is scheduled to perform original music, dance routines and storytelling in Surrey and Delta this month.

Each of the members of the Watoto Children's Choir has suffered the loss of one or both parents. They live in children's villages in Uganda, where they receive care and education courtesy of Watoto – a program founded by Canadians Gary and Marilyn Skinner in 1994 to address the Uganda orphan crisis. According to Watoto, in sub-Saharan Africa HIV/AIDS has orphaned more than 14 million children. The program currently provides care and long-term education for over 2,500 orphaned and abandoned children.

Watoto Children's Choirs have toured Canada, the United States, Europe, the United Kingdom, Australia, New Zealand, Hong Kong, Asia, Uganda, South Africa, Israel and Brazil.

The 2012 tour is entitled Beautiful Africa: A New Generation. Performances are free of charge, but merchandise, including CDs, DVDs, T-shirts, African jewelry and craft items made by women in the Watoto program, will available for purchase.

Funding for Watoto is made possible through free will offerings at the end of each performance as well as donations from individuals, businesses, churches, groups and communities.

Locally, performances take place Jan. 18, 7 p.m. at North Delta Evangelical Church, 11300 84 Ave.; Jan. 22, 7 p.m. at Relate Church, 6788 152 St.; Jan. 25, 7 p.m. at Delta Church, 7696 112 St.; Jan. 29, 9 a.m. and 11 a.m. at Cedar Grove Baptist Church, 10330 144 St.; and Jan. 29, 6:30 p.m. at Surrey Pentecostal Church, 16870 80 Ave.

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