Volunteer Abroad - Costa Rica, Volunteer Abroad Programs

Wordless Travel: Photo Essay of a Costa Rica Volunteer Program

by Daniela Dominguez, Greenheart Travel Volunteer Abroad Participant in Costa Rica

We were working on a gardening project by using Hidroponia and jeans to grow small plants like cilantro and chives. A student from the local university came to teach us how to make them. This is our finished project. By making some holes in the jeans (previously filled with organic compost) we inserted some seeds that will later grow into chives and cilantro.

This is my mom Magdalena. She came to Proyecto Asis to show all of the volunteers how to make Costa Rican tamales. It was a fun experience because we all did everything ourselves. She only helped us by telling us what to do and how to do it, so now we can all make tamales at home.

This is a tamal. The ingredients we used was corn masa, rice, peppers and carrots. Meat is usually used too, but we tried to keep it animal friendly at Proyecto Asis.

I think it’s pretty nice to be able to say that my first time horseback riding was in Costa Rica! Some of the volunteers and I went horseback riding and we got a beautiful view of the Arenal Volcano and a lagoon.

Later that day we took a hike for a closer look of the volcano. We were able to see a lot of new plants and animals really close! We saw snakes, spiders and lizards that were a foot away from us! And the view up there was amazing. There was a lake in front of the volcano and the mountains looked even prettier from up there. These are some volunteers from Chicago, Texas, California, Wisconsin, Canada and Germany, along with a friend from Asis.

We also hung out with the kids in third grade. They invited us to play soccer and some other playground games during recess.

The second graders at the elementary school made each of us some drawings of the national symbols of Costa Rica, like the Guanacaste tree and the flag.

An opportunity that we got to experience was to see President Laura Chinchilla ten feet away from us! One of the towns that is close to Asis had a celebration for the 60th anniversary of women’s suffrage. There was a big festival with crafts and food stands and a ceremony to honor the first women that ever voted in Costa Rica.

One of the characteristics of Costa Rica that you will either love or hate is the amount of rainfall. Since I live in the desert, I loved it! It was very refreshing and it helps to keep Costa Rica green.

The great thing about this program is that I got to see animals that I would haven’t otherwise been able to be around. There are so many animals there! Raccoons, spider monkeys, parrots, dogs, alligators, snapping turtles, kinkajous and sloths are just a few of the animals we got to help. It gives you a good feeling knowing that you are able to help creatures that are often abused, just because some humans think they are a superior race. Doing this trip made me realize that every single creature in this planet needs help, from little kids to animals.

About Greenheart Travel

CCI Greenheart Travel is personally invested in providing cultural immersion programs that change lives, advance careers and create leaders. We achieve this by partnering with organizations and governments overseas that empower their local communities through experiential learning and practical development. We provide others with the same positive travel experiences in which we ourselves engage. Through travel and cultural exchange, we help individuals reach their full potential, leading to a more tolerant, peaceful and environmentally sustainable world.

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