Joining the conservation efforts in Costa Rica

Last year, I couldn’t decide what to do during the summer holiday and where to go, when it suddenly stroke me: I never in my life volunteered and may be it was time to do something for others, less fortunate than me. I had heard and read tons of news about non profit organizations that offered volunteer projects in various destinations around the world, so I began researching the topic, trying to figure out what I could do. The first results I got when I searched for volunteer work were some projects in Africa. Truth be told, I would have very much liked to help kids in Africa, but I was a little worried about going there, so I tried to find something a little closer to home. I came across this article talking about Costa Rica conservation efforts and how many people volunteered to help this country with reforesting and preservation of wildlife and I thought this was a great idea. I began looking for more information and the more I was reading, the more convinced I was that I had to volunteer for conservation projects in Costa Rica. As I focused my search on this area, I even found a great volunteering organization that provided work and projects in this country, an organization called Green Life Volunteers.

 

As the destination was set, I ran into another pickle, that of choosing a certain project to volunteer for. I knew I wanted to join the Costa Rica conservation efforts, but I didn’t know what exactly I wanted to do and what suited me. There were several projects available, from parrot breeding and rescue and turtle conservation to reforestation and recycling and serpentarium projects. I cut out the last one right from the start, as I never liked snakes or reptiles of any kind and I also strike down the parrot thing, as birds are not really my thing either. However, both the turtle conservation and the reforestation projects seemed quite intriguing and both appeared as important work. I read the details of each project but that wasn’t much helped, as I couldn’t make up my mind, so I finally flipped a coin to volunteer for conservation projects in Costa Rica. The turtles were the winner.

 

I knew almost nothing about turtles when I applied for the project, but by the end of those two months I considered myself an expert. I could have been a marine biologist for all I knew. When I decided to volunteer for conservation projects in Costa Rica I had no idea that it would be such an amazing experience. Apart from the fact that I have learned a lot about turtle habitats, nests and life, I discovered a truly unique culture and world there. The people were lovely and I had a great time living in the community and sharing my experiences and my views with them. Joining the Costa Rica conservation efforts really was the best decision ever and an infinitely rewarding experience. 

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Variety of projects for volunteer work in Costa Rica

Costa Rica is a beautiful country, a destination many choose for their vacation, as it is perfectly located at both the Pacific Ocean and the Caribbean, offering white, sandy beaches that are a thrill to sunbathe on. However, there are people who travel to Costa Rica not for fun or holiday purposes, but in order to work as volunteers. Although Costa Rica is one of the most developed countries in Central America and its efforts towards human development and environmentalist policies were largely recognized and applauded over the last years, there is still plenty of help that is needed in poor communities or in natural habitats. For instance, many people consider offering volunteer teaching in Costa Rica to children that are orphans or children who do not have access to education, most of the volunteers teaching English classes. However, the opportunities for volunteer work in Costa Rica are numerous and there are also plenty of organizations that help students or people of all ages get there are be volunteers in this beautiful Latin country, a good example being Green Life Volunteers.

 

As mentioned above, there are various forms of volunteer projects, from the above given example of teaching English to children and helping construction crews build and renovate spaces within the poor communities to animal rescue in Costa Rica or turtle conservation. Animal rescue projects mainly refer to stray cats and dogs, which are adopted and volunteers help organize their spaying and neutering at local vet clinics. Turtle conservation projects involve volunteers working on the beautiful beaches of Costa Rica, helping endangered species of turtles survive and create a normal and beneficial habitat for them. Volunteers are also supposed to help baby turtles get into the ocean safely and patrol the beach to protect the turtle nests from predators or illegal extraction. There are also other types of conservation projects, such as reforestation and recycling, organic farming or parrot rescue projects, as Costa Rica has a rich flora and fauna and there is plenty of work to be done and help to be given.

 

Due to the fact that there are so many volunteer projects available in Costa Rica, there are also numerous organizations that help people embrace this great opportunity and bring their contribution to the world. Before choosing between volunteer teaching in Costa Rica and turtle conservation or between organic farming and animal rescue in Costa Rica, an eager volunteer should take the time and research the options he or she has with regard to volunteer organizations and decide which one to resort to. Different organizations will offer different projects, although most of them are within the areas mentioned above, but exact destinations and durations will vary from one association to the next. Another factor that will differ is the price or expenses involved, as some projects provide food and accommodation, while others also include transportation.

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My experience as a turtle conservation Costa Rica volunteer

Those interested in becoming volunteers should think twice before making this decision. I am not saying this trying to discourage people from volunteering, because this is a fantastic experience I would recommend to anyone. I say this because I saw many people dream about going to an exotic remote island to help endangered species thinking that they would have little to do and sit gazing at the sun all day long. When you are volunteering, you have to keep in mind that there will be quite a few responsibilities on your shoulders, so you should be mentally prepared to stay outdoors and do manual labor all day.

 

I know it from experience that people usually have high expectations from their volunteer projects. Some people want to save the world and are disappointed when the only thing they get to do all day is cleaning the beach, others treat volunteer work as mini-vacations and this is why you should make an informed decision before taking up this role. I was a turtle conservation Costa Rica volunteer a few times until now. I basically spent all my summer vacations since my eighteenth birthday on the Costa Rican beaches monitoring the turtles and protecting them. I found all these projects on Glvolunteers.com, in case you are interested in helping the turtles survive. This is why I know from experience that volunteering is a wonderful and rewarding experience, but it can also be a bit disappointing, if your expectations are too far from reality.

 

Costa Rica turtle conservation volunteer work involves many responsibilities, but it is also fun, especially if you like turtles. Some of the things I had to do while working on various projects were very simple and easy such as patrolling the beach every day and counting the turtles. We would go into pairs of two or four and it was quite fun because we talked and laughed a lot. The best part was the fact that we got to know many other people passionate about turtles and saving endangered species like us. I even learned a bit of Korean from a friend I made during my first volunteer project. Other responsibilities involved manual labor such as keeping the beaches clean or building the watering system. Some turtle volunteer projects in Costa Rica also involved planting trees and community service.

 

I am an outdoor person, so I liked the fact that we walked so much every day. I even enjoyed the manual labor, but not everyone felt the same as me. When you first arrive you get welcomed by beautiful beaches and bluish waters, the scenery is majestic. Then, you go to see the turtles and the nest you are supposed to protect and that warms you up quite a bit before you receive the list of responsibilities. This is the moment most people panic, but after a couple of days you get used to it and it starts to become fun and exciting. After you see the turtles coming back on the beach safe and sound you get a beautiful and feeling of reward and you feel like the sore feet were worth it.

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Encouraging youth volunteer in Costa Rica

Youth volunteering is a topic that has been more and more discussed in several different countries. It appears that this particular domain has been granted with sufficient popularity due to the many benefits it holds. The youth population has much to gain as a result of taking part in projects of this kind. Since volunteering appears to be the newest way to help nature, it is only natural for more and more people to encourage their youngsters to participate in volunteering actions. As you might have expected, the countries that need the help of volunteering most, the countries that are currently fighting with an impressive number of problems are also the ones that have limited financial resources. Luckily, there is a place in which the younger generation can enjoy the beauty of volunteering without encountering any dangerous situation.

 

Youth volunteer in Costa Rica is a practice that has been developing for a number of years. Some of the problems that need volunteering work to be properly solved are linked to the world of animals. In this part of the world, several endangered species have found their retreat. Therefore, Costa Rica is the perfect place in which students can take part in volunteering projects. Another reason for which student volunteer in Costa Rica is more popular as opposed to others is that of security. Costa Rica is not fighting any security or safety issues. In fact, this country welcomes over 2 million tourists each year. Thus, it can be argued that Costa Rica is a safe environment for youth volunteering. Coming back to the main topic, being a student volunteer in Costa Rica can bring forward many advantages. Working in the benefit of nature, without any financial expectations is probably the most important one. Youth volunteering is all about education and respect for nature. Teaching students how to become mature, responsible adults is one of the results of volunteers. Furthermore, encouraging students to participate in volunteering projects might not teach them how to make fortunes, but it will surely offer them a taste of what life and work are all about. They will learn to respect their tasks, to work as hard as possible to complete projects. Also, an aspect that most people fail to remember is the fragility of life.

 

Take for instance the turtle Costa Rica conservation project. Baby turtles have to fight for survival from day one and most of them fail, this being one of the reasons for the recent concerns regarding this specie. In order for the world to be populated by responsible adults, with real respect for life, volunteering should be encouraged from an early age. If you are interested in discovering real volunteering opportunities, then you should look towards trustworthy organizations that support actions of this kind. A great example in this regard is definitely Green Life Volunteers. On the official website of this organization all interested visitors will be able to discover a long list of volunteering opportunities, which are not to be missed out on. The world would certainly be a better place if more people would dedicate a bit of their time to volunteering.

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How to choose your Costa Rica volunteer organisation

Cost Rica is a country with many ongoing volunteer projects, but those who want to participate in such a project will soon discover that there are several Costa Rica volunteer organisations they can choose from. Even though one may think that all volunteer projects are about the same thing, they will realise that there are many other factors that come into play when you choose to be a part of a volunteer project. For starters, most of these projects cost and depending on the budget you are willing to spend, you might not afford to work with all the available organisations. Try looking for a company that actually directs everything you pay to the projects and the host families where you will be staying, rather than in the pockets of the foreigners who run them.

The next thing people should pay attention to when they look for summer volunteer opportunities in Cost Rica is the flexibility of the programs. Most organisation impose minimum staying periods, so if you are undecided about this experience and would like to try it for a week and decide afterwards if you will continue to stay there or you want something else, definitely look for an organisation that has very flexible projects. A good organisation will appreciate any help received and may even have projects where people can volunteer for a few days.

The projects offered by the Costa Rica volunteer organisations matter as well. Try choosing something where you will actually make a difference, because it will give you a sense of accomplishment that nothing else will. Your presence three will help not only those directly involved into the project, but also the family that will host you and the local economy. Fortunately there are plenty of summer volunteer opportunities in Costa Rica that people can choose from, so you should not have any problems in finding something that suits your preferences perfectly. A good organisation will understand that each volunteer is different and has his own talent and passions. To this extent, try choosing a project that you would actually like to participate in. If you like children, try an English teaching course while if you love animals, perhaps a parrot or a turtle rescue program will be best for you.

All in all, those who want to choose a volunteer organisation in Costa Rica should definitely analyse all their options and choose something that really fits their needs and preferences. There are many fields where your help would make a difference, so it is worth to pay a little attention when you choose the project you want to be a part of. The organisation chosen will play a very important part in the overall experience that you have there, so make sure you make the right decision. Organisations such as Green Life Volunteers offer people the chance to be a part of beautiful programs that are designed to help this country and make an actual difference. You can expect to have a wonderful time during your stay in this country and make memories that you will remember happily your entire life.

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