Published on January 1, 2020
Every second year, HVGS students and teachers embark on a life-changing trip to the Jabulani School in Zimbabwe.
HVGS has now been supporting the school for six years, and during that time, we have made significant contributions to the eco-system garden, school buildings and learning resources at the school.
The scope and achievements of this extraordinary project are extensive and deeply felt by the children at the Jabulani School, and our own students who return from Jabulani with a new perspective about their role in serving others.
The week spent at the Jabulani School involves building new school facilities, working with classes in the garden, reading with the students, organising the books in the library, learning some local ‘Nbele’ and playing games with the students.
In 2019, our students raised enough money to build an open-air reading room as an extension to the library previously built by HVGS students and teachers. The reading room was a welcome addition to the school, providing another space, sheltered from the hot sun, for Jabulani students to read and learn; and doubling as a space for them to eat their lunch out of the dust and sun. The group were also fortunate to have the Village Chief walk them to three local homesteads to experience how the students and their families live. The community members were very welcoming and very proud of their modest homes.
Along with the addition of new buildings, we deliver suitcases full of school uniforms, sports clothes, shoes, stationery and laptops for the school to use (once they have solar electricity connected to the library).
Angela Roughan, Jabulani Supervising Teacher, describes the trip as unforgettable.
“It’s hard to put the experience into words,” she says. “The Jabulani students walk to and from school every day – this is after they have already woken early to complete their jobs, including walking to fetch water. Students as young as four can walk up to 7km each way in an environment where they may come across elephants and lions. It’s so removed from our own experience living in Australia. It’s eye-opening.”
“Some of these students are lucky to have one meal a day, and often the school will provide that meal for students.”
The fundraising aspect of this project is fundamental in procuring the materials and building supplies needed to construct the learning spaces and supply the educational resources, which are critical to the students at Jabulani.
Our annual Golf Day is a major fundraiser and is well-supported by the broader business community. Since 2014, the Golf Day has raised over $46,000. Thank you to our generous sponsors and donors and our passionate golfers who always make the day a huge success and a lot of fun!
In addition, HVGS students sell chocolates, seek donations from business partners, hold sausage sizzles, and special events to support the fundraising goal. The commitment from students and staff is significant but integral.
Service projects like this is at the heart of the HVGS ethos.
HVGS students return from the Jabulani Service project with a different perspective of the world, with increased empathy, and leadership skills. They come to learn that through their individual and collective actions, they can improve the lives of others, affect change and make an impact on the world.