Music for Africa aids angels

Music for Africa is on Feb. 24 at 11 a.m. at the Phillip T. Young Recital Hall at the University of Victoria

Laura How applying temporary tattoos and handing out Canadian flags at St. Nicholas Orphanage in Lusaka

Travel isn’t always about the destination, sometimes it is about the journey, and three years ago when 21-year old University of Victoria School of Music student Laura How visited Zambia with her family it started a journey that continues today.

While traveling through Africa with her parents, twin brother and younger brother, How visited the St. Nicholas Orphanage and elementary school at the Makeni Centre in Lasaka, Zambia.

“We got to know the 30 kids,” said How. “The youngest was a newborn. He was a very cute baby, but unfortunately he had HIV/AIDS so he required a lot more support and it was hard to know how he would be doing once we left.”

Through a student who recently went down to the African AIDS Angels (AAA) supported centre, How and her family saw pictures of the now toddler who is doing well. “He seems to be a very happy child, which is exciting,” said How.

During two weeks at the Makeni Centre, the Hows went to the local school the orphans attended and watched as they killed and cleaned chickens.

“They really do cook and eat pretty much every part of that bird,” said How. “They can’t waste any meat because they only get the chickens once a week.”

Experiencing how the orphans in Zambia lived compared to her life at home made her realize how fortunate she was, which set her in motion to become involved with AAA.

AAA is a volunteer-run charity that supplies food, shelter, medical care and education for families affected by AIDS in Malawi, Zambia and South Africa.

“It wasn’t until I got back from Africa that I became involved with African AIDS Angels and began making presentations to different schools about the projects,” she said.

How – who is now on the AAA board of directors and is an active member of the youth engagement committee – visits local schools equipped with a PowerPoint presentation and teaches elementary students about the projects in Africa. She also leads angel making workshops.

And on Feb. 24, How will take the excitement she first had when she returned from Zambia and combine it with her other longterm passion – music.

How is a fourth year student at the University of Victoria majoring in piano. She has been playing the piano for 14 years.

“When I returned from Africa I was really excited about the possibility of supporting the orphans in Zambia, and I was looking to see whether we could make a larger, longer lasting impact,” she said. “I know that our angel sales do very well, but there is a limited market for that so we are looking at other options to support our projects.”

Combining her passions, How began organizing the Music for Africa event.

Along with fellow musicians from the School of Music, in addition to Victoria Conservatory of Music students and community musicians, How will take the stage playing a classical music repertoire including Bach, Beethoven and Schubert.

“One of the really exciting performers we have is Eehjoon Kwan,” said How. “She was the 2012 young soloist at Symphony Splash.”

How’s younger brother Nathan will also been sharing the stage.

Nathan – a Grade 12 student at Mount Douglas Secondary – plays trombone with his school concert and jazz bands, and sings in both the school’s men’s and mixed voice choirs.

The performance will also feature a silent auction with items donated by the community such as tickets to Ballet Victoria’s Secret Garden and the Pacific Opera Victoria’s Tosca.

Music for Africa is on Feb. 24 at 11 a.m. at the Phillip T. Young Recital Hall at the University of Victoria.

Tickets are $10 for adults and $5 for students and are available at Ivy’s Bookshop, Long and McQuade or at the door.

For more information about AAA visit their website at aidsangelsvictoria.ca.

Just Posted

Premier John Horgan announces improvements to Highway 14

Construction on the $10 million project is set to begin immediately

Upgrades to Millstream overpass to begin Feb. 1

Project includes addition of left hand turn lane onto highway to Victoria

Victoria Grizzlies look to continue hot steak

Team hits the road this weekend before Family Fun Night

Man hospitalized after early morning Sooke Road crash

Police say injuries are non life-threatening

Monster trucks invade Victoria

Traxxas Monster Truck Tour stops at Save-On Foods Memorial Centre this weekend

Ice-cream-eating bear draws controversy

An Alberta Wildlife Park posted a video this week of one of their bears going through a Dairy Queen drive-through

LETTER: The sewage spiral continues in Greater Victoria

My left brain has been trying to digest the news and comments… Continue reading

Fernie, RCMP go to court over city log books in fatal ammonia leak probe

Log books center stage in clashing of investigations between the city and RCMP

Renowned Comox Valley sasquatch researcher passes away

A renowned biologist and leading Canadian sasquatch researcher who called the Comox… Continue reading

B.C.’s biggest pot plant planned for Oliver

Co-founder Tony Holler said the 700,000 sq. ft. facility would produce 100,000 kg of pot per year

Train derails in Northwest B.C.

CN reports no injuries or dangerous goods involved after coal train derailment.

Double-doubles and demonstrations: Employees rally outside Tim Hortons

Protests held in response to Ontario franchise owners cutting employee benefits and breaks

Las Vegas shooter acted alone, exact motive still undetermined: Sheriff

Stephen Paddock was behind the gunfire that killed 58 people including two Canadians

Most Read