Meet Karen Aufderhaar, (pictured above) school principal of Rafiki Village School in a rural area of Zambia some sixty kilometers from Lusaka, and Guest on the most recent edition of The Chanters Lodge Experience with the Milli Jam Ingredient featuring Kaufela. ‘The Experience’ is our weekly Sunday night radio show on Zambezi 107.7 fm, Livingstone’s leading local radio station.
Karen was staying at Chanters Lodge for some well deserved rest and relaxation having completed almost a year of her two year assignment at Rafiki Village. “Why Chanters Lodge?” Wondered Milli Jam. Karen explained that when she first accepted the voluntary assignment, one of the former directors of the village had told her that when she wanted some time off, a visit to Livingstone and Victoria Falls was a must, and that Chanters Lodge would suite her accommodation requirements. We were pleased to hear that Karen was happy with the recommendation and the lodge.
Karen told listeners that she came from a town near San Antonio, Texas in the USA, and had previously volunteered with Rafiki Foundation at a village in Kenya. She was delighted when the Foundation contacted her asking her to undertake the position in Zambia. She has been an ‘educator’ all her working life, but not always in a school situation, having undertaken education assignments in hospitals and an outdoor centre in the past, as well as teaching senior adults with learning difficulties. She explained that Rafiki Village in Zambia catered for some seventy orphans and was one of ten such villages in Africa. It was a childrens’ home and a training centre as well. It was hoped to expand the school to include secondary education in the near future.
The music on the show was good. We opened with Daft Punk’s number one UK hit ‘Get Lucky’ back to back with Macklemore’s follow up to Thrift Shop called ‘Can’t Hold Us’. Kaufela chose JK ft Petersen with ‘Kanyimbo’ coupled with Mampi’s ‘Wali Lo Welela’. Milli Jam featured Nikki Minaj and Sean Paul. Our oldie of the week was Rihanna’s ‘Umbrella’ and the prize given to the first listener to text us the name of the performing artist was quickly snapped up! Innocent won a dinner for two with drinks at the lodge.
Karen told listeners that she had enjoyed her days in Livingstone. She was tired from a lot of walking around the Falls area including climbing down to the Boiling Point (Rapid Number 1). She had visited and very much enjoyed Livingstone Museum and had loved her one day safari to Chobe NP in Botswana. She was looking forward to a sunset cruise on her last evening in town. Single, without children, Karen said she was a devoted aunty to her two nieces back in Texas. Music wise she favoured James Taylor and Neil Diamond, sports wise famous basketball team San Antonio Spurs. “Spurs” queried Milli Jam and I (Gunners to our boots). We laughed. She said her favourite player was Manu Ginobili.
Karen said she most missed her friends, family and Mexican food in Texas and that she loved Zambian people the most. Asked where she would like to be and what she would like to be doing in ten years’ time Karen answered ‘I would like to be back in my home town in America doing the next thing that God puts before me’. “Sweet” we said!