Did ZOA rock?

Last Saturday night, music lovers and ZOA supporters joined together to attend ZOA Rock at Les Caves de Bon-Sejour, a comfortably-sized bar right down the street from College du Leman.

Walking down the stairs, I handed my ticket to the ZOA volunteers, found some people I knew and claimed a table with chairs in the back corner of the room. Biding my time with a Coke until the first performance, we sat around the table and talked about who was playing, when they would be going on stage, and how we were looking forward to seeing our teachers and peers perform.

When the lights flashed to warn everyone to take their seats, a stampede of people poured in from the other room, trying to find an empty chair. The lights dimmed and the show began.

The show opened with Stephanie Kelly, Khristina Shevchenko and Emily Wulf singing “I Gotta Feeling”, accompanied by Johnny de Croÿ-Solre, Jack Roebuck, John Suzuki, and Ryan Kale.

Throughout the evening performances, a variety of music styles were shared. Stephanie Kelly did an acoustic performance of a medley of different songs, along with her own composition, “Undecided”, in a more upbeat rhythm with Mr. Shaw’s band, Pure Malt. She also sang many songs with Johnny, Jack, John, and Ryan.

Nicely contrasting with the rock vibe of the entire night, Khyrystyna Shevchenko and Ximena Canseco beautifully sang Sarah McLachlan’s “Angel” and “I Don’t Know How To Love Him” in a Spanish translation, respectively.

It wasn’t just students who performed that night. Teachers came with friends to support ZOA and enjoy the music. A member of faculty walked on stage and introduced his band in the thickest French accent imaginable, but performed “Born To Run” in perfect English with no trace of an accent.

After they were done, Mr. Shaw walked on the stage and introduced his band, Pure Malt. After performing “Alive”, they started up on “Born to Be Wild” by Steppenwolf, which led to my favorite moment of the show. The chorus began and two middle-aged teachers started banging their heads and hands, forming a rock n’ roll salute. I felt compelled to raise a lighter in the air and sway with the music, but resisted due to the fire hazard. Mr. Shaw performed as if he were a retired rock star that never really retired. As each performer left the stage, Chris (I don’t know his last name, sorry!) and Jack Roebuck remained behind and kept the beat, focusing on their music the entire night.

After another performance from Johnny, Jack, Ryan, and John, a new face jumped on stage. Introduced as D-Man and dressed in bright, colorful clothing, he began rapping to music played by the previously mentioned musicians while waving a green glow stick in the air. He created such a energetic atmosphere with a refreshing performance of a song simply called “Rap”. I, along with the audience, got up from their seats and began dancing to his beat.

Mr. Shaw sang alongside Isabelle Skidmore in “Lightning Crashes.” He and his band later performed with Emily Wulf as well. Her performance was very upbeat. With a smile on her face, she sang and kept time with her foot. Isabelle’s performance, on the other hand, was solemn and tranquil. She sang a slow song, easing down the audience as the end of the night drew near.

To be honest, I was a bit surprised by how well everyone performed. They were fantastic! The collection of performances staggered my brain as I left the venue. The sheer amount of awesomeness was overwhelming. Once I arrived home, I raved over the concert and described to the father what exactly he had missed out on. Simply sensational.

By Alexandra and Diana Smith

ZOA Calendars

To raise funds for SOCH (Serenje Orphans Children’s Home), ZOA has put together a calendar that will be sold in the coming weeks around campus. It features pictures from the orphanage as well as the fundraising activities held by ZOA at CDL.  There are two versions of the calendar, one a wall calendar (being sold for 15 CHF) and the other a desktop calendar. (8 CHF)

The calendars will be sold on the following dates:

  • Tuesday Dec. 6th – German Market during periods 5-7
  • Wednesday Dec. 7th – PFA Market (8:30 – 4:00) in the Cervin Auditorium
  • Wednesday Dec 7th – At the New York performance.
  • Saturday Dec. 10th – During the Staff Christmas Party.
  • Wednesday Dec. 14th – ZOA Bakesale + Calendars
There will also be some calendar sales happening in the mornings before school.

ZOA’s African Afternoon

In early October, Collège du Léman’s ZOA group had an afternoon of fundraising for 5th graders.  Afterschool, the kids came to the art class rooms to meet the volunteers excited about the afternoon ahead of them, and then they started the activities. It was an African themed afternoon, but there were many different activities that the kids could choose from. We started off with every one making masks. If was great to see how when we gave the kids a mask and some paint, all the different things they came up with. Each child came out with a different idea of how to represent Zambia on a paper plate.

Other than mask making, there was also arts and crafts and face painting. In the face painting area, the kids were able to be painted whatever they liked, as long as it followed the theme. Some chose to be wild animals, while others were painted like tribesmen. When their faces were painted, they had a choice to join the arts and craft station or go back to mask making. If they choose to go to the arts and crafts table, on one side, they made noise makers. Out of two empty yogurt containers, they created noise makers. We put some pasta in them and glued it shut and let the kids decorate them and take their master pieces home to their families. On the other side, they were passing around feathers and glitter, creating animals out of old water bottles. With some paint, feathers and googly eyes, they could turn what is considered garbage, into an artsy peacock.

After they were done with the creative part of the afternoon, we spent the last part outside once the sun came out. Starting with relay races, and ending with a football game, we were able to send the kids home happy, tired, and knowing a little more about the outside world.

Welcome to Collège du Léman’s very own Z.O.A site!

Z ambian 



ZOA is a school-based charity established by Kevin Gilbert, the current head of the CDL middle school and a former volunteer teacher in Zambia. ZOA provides the funds to maintain the running of an orphanage in Serenje known as the ‘Serenje Orphans Childrens Home’ (SOCH)

Many other schools are participating in this charity (and nearly cover all the orphanage costs) such as:

St. George’s British International School(Rome) and Collège du Léman (Geneva). St Peter’s School (Lisbon) also continues to support the project, whilst other schools who have assisted in the past are Aquinas College (Melbourne); Peebles High School(Peebles); and Cleeve School (Cheltenham).

Our Goals:

  • To raise awareness about the orphan problem in southern Africa
  • To complete the construction of the Serenje Orphans Childrens Home (SOCH): i.e. dormitories; a lounge; a canteen; a laundry; sick bay; Manager House with volunteer accommodation; storeroom; study room;
  • To raise 21000 euros each calendar year to meet the running costs of the orphanage.

(all photos on this site were taken from the actual orphanage)