About Daraja

Our Mission

The Daraja Children’s Choir was created to bridge different cultures by igniting hearts to worship, connecting lives to serve and discipling young leaders.

Our Vision

We exist to engage the Church through a unique and intimate worship sharing the limitless joy found in Jesus Christ.

How We Do It

Each year a unique group of children travel from 410 Bridge communities to America as the Daraja Children’s Choir, touring the US to lead worship at churches, schools, and events. Through a worshipful time of dance, song, and personal stories, the choir encourages us to go and serve others with our God-given gifts.

History of Daraja

In 2007, Lanny Donoho (founder of BigStuf and The 410 Bridge) had the idea to bring a children’s choir from Africa to the United States as a partner ministry of The 410 Bridge. At that time, The 410 Bridge had already been serving several communities in Kenya for 2 years. The 410 Bridge was sending committed Americans to Kenya to serve and build long-term relationships with partner communities. Now, it was time to bridge Africa to the U.S.!

The first Daraja Children’s Choir arrived in late July 2007. The choir sang at BigStuf Camp and traveled the southeast worshipping God and igniting a passion for action in the lives of so many people. From July 2007 to December 2010 almost 70 children from Kenya in 4 different choirs have traveled with Daraja. Their ministry has deeply touched the hearts of churches and individuals all across the U.S. In 2011 and 2012 the choir did not travel due to uncontrollable immigration issues with the U.S. Embassy in Kenya.
In late 2012, The 410 bridge partnered with a new community in Kaihura, Uganda to help bring Christ-centered, community-initiated development to their village. A new chapter of the story began in 2013 when Daraja had its first Ugandan choir travel to the U.S. Lives on both sides of the bridge, Africa & U.S., were changed through the authentic, joyful voices of the children of Kaihura.

As The 410 Bridge ministry grows, we are excited to see more nations join in one voice of worship with churches across the U.S. We believe, as we connect and serve each other cross-culturally, that God is glorified and the body of Christ is made stronger. We can’t wait to see what God is going to do next!

Founded in 2006, The 410 Bridge name comes from the verse 1 Peter 4:10 “Each one should use whatever gift he has received to serve others, faithfully administering God’s grace in its various forms.” The 410 Bridge has a desire to engage the West in the fight to restore dignity, purpose, and freedom to the poor. The 410 Bridge vision is to radically improve the pace and depth of growth in the spiritual and physical health of communities in the developing world by transforming the way that the body of Christ engages in healthy global missions. The 410 Bridge community development model includes providing discipleship, safe water, quality education, health care, and economic empowerment to 45+ rural communities in 4 countries.

Check out our new Alumni page to see all of our active students who have traveled in our choirs.

“Daraja” is the Swahili African translation for the English word “bridge”. The word bridge is intended to personify the children crossing the bridge from their country to the United States, and connecting hearts to worship the One True God of heaven and earth.

The choir’s local leadership from the countries represented will audition a large amount of children from 410 Bridge communities, and then select 18-24 children that exhibit the desire to learn, lead, and have a love for the Lord.

Children in the choir range from ages 9 to 13 years old.

The U.S. tour typically lasts 6 months.

Yes. Continued education for the children is key to their success as they return home. We desire that each child return home with improved overall test scores. We want to equip each child to excel in school so he or she has a brighter future. We have teachers from the countries represented that travel with the choir on tour and classes are held daily. We also have interns that participate in teaching, developing, and tutoring the children.

We tour the country on bus with the Daraja staff, interns and children.

Daraja is a unique ministry that seeks to make Jesus famous all around the globe. The choir values a culture of service, honor, love and respect. We recognize that as we travel and meet hundreds of people, Daraja Children’s Choir has the opportunity to serve others and share the limitless amounts of joy found in Jesus. As the children grow in their relationship with Christ, they cannot wait to share His love with the world. Daraja is truly a worship choir based on hearts turned toward God. We want God to use this ministry as a channel to draw others into His presence through authentic, Christ-centered worship from the hearts of children who recognize their need and dependence on Him.

The mentoring program begins in the children’s home community as we train and prepare the children for a cross-cultural experience in the U.S. When the children arrive in the States, we spend six months training, developing, and discipling in the areas of leadership, education and spiritual growth. The children also lead thousands of people in worship every week in churches all over the country, while engaging with new people daily by telling their individual stories. This impacts how they see the world around them and builds their confidence to go and take action as disciples for Christ.

Development in the life of each child is continued through our partner organization The 410 Bridge after the children return home. This allows them to continue to receive the support needed to get a quality education, leadership training, and spiritual mentorship.

Each child is enrolled in The 410 Bridge Child Sponsorship program, receiving sponsorships which go towards his/her education and spiritual development. Through the sponsorship, quarterly gatherings allow the children to be encouraged, discipled, and reflect on the faithfulness of God. An annual retreat is held in which a US team travels to spend several days with the Daraja Choir alumni to encourage, interact, and disciple. It is exciting to see how God uses these times of investment to spur on growth in the lives of the children.

The Daraja Choir depends on the generosity and financial support of our donors. Our Daraja Family donors give recurring donations that help to sustain our ministry year round. See the Get Involved tab on the website and look under the Ways to Give option for Family Membership information. There are many ways you can get involved with helping our ministry and/or serve as an advocate. For additional information regarding ways you can volunteer, please email Elisa Allred at Elisa@410bridge.org.