HERE TO HELP: Women in Harmony music director Elaine Coates (right) will travel to Uganda later this year to work with the African Children's Choir. Former members of the choir travelled to Toowoomba to perform last year incuding Elizabeth Panga (left) and tour manager Abraham Kiyingi.
HERE TO HELP: Women in Harmony music director Elaine Coates (right) will travel to Uganda later this year to work with the African Children's Choir. Former members of the choir travelled to Toowoomba to perform last year incuding Elizabeth Panga (left) and tour manager Abraham Kiyingi. Kevin Farmer

Toowoomba woman's Africa trip to share song

A TOOWOOMBA woman is preparing for a trip of a lifetime, to help change the lives of less fortunate young people.

Elaine Coates will travel to Uganda in September as part of a humanitarian aid trip with organisation KwaYa Australia.

Ms Coates, also the Women in Harmony music director, will work in slums and remote villages with the African Children's Choir.

Last year former members of the world-renowned African Children's Choir UBUNTU visited Toowoomba to perform, with the help of Ms Coates who organised local concerts.

"During that time I found out more about going to do this aid work in Uganda," she said.

"Most years KwaYa takes a small group of 15 people there who want to go and help out."

The group will deliver educational material and financial donations to schools and provide gifts of basic essentials to orphanages.

"Almost all the children who end up in African children's choirs have lost one or both parents through disease or war and the choir offers them a chance," she said.

The trip is entirely self-funded so Ms Coates has undertaken many fundraising events. The next event will be held on Sunday at St John's Anglican Church in Dalby at 3pm. It is called A Singing of Stories, with songs from Australian female composers as well as original songs.

Her next big event will be held on Friday, May 26 at the USQ refectory called Korks for KwaYa at 5.30pm.

The "cork pull" event will involve people buying and then drawing a numbered cork out of a barrel. The number corresponds to a pre-numbered donated bottle of wine or spirits, so everyone wins.

Jazz band Ain't Misbehaving will perform at the event, to get tickets go to trybooking.com?PODA.

For more information, and to donate to the trip as well as bottles for the event, call Ms Coates on 0407 621 380.



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