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Hatcliffe Community Initiatives

Service LearningService Learning | Community Zimbabwe

Project Overview

Hatcliffe is a resettled informal community just outside Harare. Tarred roads, schools, electricity, piped water, policing, social services, sewerage treatment and medical clinics are virtually non-existent here. Many of the estimated 35,000 – 50,000 residents live in informal housing. HIV infection rates are well above 50% (some findings suggest 75-80%), and unemployment is more than 90%. A significant percentage of children are suffering abuse and malnutrition, and do not receive adequate education, especially those who must take responsibility over their own households.

Timeframe for Involvement: 1 – 4 weeks 

To have a meaningful experience, at least one week must be spent in the community.

Service Impact

From school, children often return to empty homes and loiter in the streets. Filled with hope for their future, the children lack social resources to support their development and help them reach their goals. There are many opportunities for involvement in community initiatives and students can shape their own experiences.

Hatcliffe is perfect for:

  • The rebuilding of social fiber (in partnership with other organizations)
  • Educational assistance (including Pre-School)
  • Home-based visits
  • Life skills education
  • Entrepreneurial training
  • Children’s afternoon clubs
  • Market gardening training
  • Support groups
  • Youth events
  • Sports facilitation
  • Work for food programs

Learning Outcomes

  • Gain an understanding of the impact of the economic downturn on the poorest of Zimbabwe’s population
  • Understand the perspective of the Hatcliffe community, develop some insight into poverty and learn about successful community-led solutions.


Students will be accommodated at The Team House in Harare.

Featured Experiences

Boma Restaurant

Meaning “the place of eating,” Boma appeals to the senses with a variety of local dishes including game meat such as kudu, warthog, and ostrich. Guests are welcome to take part in traditional drumming and dancing. They even have the opportunity to eat a local delicacy – mopane worms!

Craft Workshop

Enjoy a cultural evening with Zimbabwean musicians, after which the local craftsmen will be available to teach you how to craft beautiful pieces of jewelry and sculptures. This cultural immersion experience will not only teach you new skills but give you insight into the cultures and traditions of the people of Zimbabwe.

High Tea at Victoria Falls Hotel

Visit the famous Victoria Falls Hotel, renowned for its colonial-era architecture. This five-star hotel is only a ten-minute walk from the falls and was built in 1904 as a key part of the “Cape to Cairo” railroad dream. Today, enjoying a high tea on the terrace gives you insight into what life was like over a hundred years ago as you gaze at the Victoria Falls Bridge with mist rising from the thundering waterfall.

Tiger Fishing

These ferocious, predatory fish lurk throughout much of the Zambezi, catching prey with their enormous jaws and needle-like teeth. Add a tiger fish to your repertoire during your sports fishing adventure on the Zambezi.

Flight of Angels

Hover through the pounding mist of Victoria Falls as you explore the stunning landscape from the air. A specially designed helicopter, providing panoramic visibility to every passenger, takes you high into the sky to be truly encompassed by the mesmerizing grandeur of the falls.

Victoria Falls

Known as the “smoke that thunders,” Victoria Falls is one of the seven natural wonders of the world. The waterfall system is the largest on Earth, about 1.7 kilometers wide and 108 meters high. Enjoy being awestruck by the sheer magnificence of the falls.

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