VOLUNTEER WORK COSTA RICA
You have a big heart for children, teenagers and their families and want to help them on their way out of poverty to a better life? Are you motivated to contribute to a better life for people, to give them a chance for education, to make them feel welcomed and protected? Our aid project in Huacas in beautiful Costa Rica offers people from the poorest backgrounds a place of safety and trust. Here they are taught, cared for and welcomed into a large family. If you enjoy working with people, want to wholeheartedly support a good cause, and at the same time want to live in one of the most beautiful regions of Central America, then this project is the right place for you.
Type of program
Educational project for children and youth
Huacas, Costa Rica
approx. 8 hours, 5 days per week
Every 1st Saturday of the month
Spanish (advanced knowledge)
Fond of children
In a village, beach 10 minutes drive away
Homestay with a host family
Optional with or without meals
English-speaking contact person via WhatsApp
Mobile internet with SIM card from WanderWorld Travel
From 1.170,00 €
Type of program: Educational project for children and teenagers
Program location: Huacas, Costa Rica
Working hours: approx. 8 hours, 5 days per week
Program start: Every 1st Saturday of the month
Duration: 2-6 months
Minimum age: 18 years
Language: Spanish (advanced knowledge)
Requirements: Fond of children
Location: In a village, beach 10 minutes drive away
Accommodation: Homestay with a host family
Board: Optional with or without meals
Support: English-speaking contact person via WhatsApp
Internet: Mobile Internet with SIM card from WanderWorld Travel
Price: from 1.170,00 €
The Nicoya Peninsula is the top holiday destination in Costa Rica and home to the country’s most beautiful beaches. And yet, poverty, lack of schooling, health problems, unemployment and frustration – all this is part of everyday life for thousands of children and their families in the province of Guanacaste. Our non-profit aid organization works every day to improve the situation for children, young people and their families, to support them and accompany them into a happy and self-determined future.
Despite Costa Rica’s comparatively high level of prosperity, a portion of the population of Guanacaste Province in northwestern Costa Rica still lives in poverty. And unfortunately, the poverty rate continues to rise year after year – and this despite the fact that tourism in the country continues to develop in parallel and the economy is growing as a result. At the same time, many families are so poorly off financially that they can barely afford to feed their children, let alone send them to school. More than 16% of young people between the ages of 13 and 17 in this region currently receive no schooling for a variety of reasons. But poverty has other devastating consequences.
To address these and many other problems of the region’s society, the aid project was created. The aim is to improve the quality of life of the children, young people and their families. To this end, the project promotes education, development, physical and mental health, and social cohesion among the people who most need this support. Currently, over 1,000 young people are supported each year through the organization’s diverse and comprehensive programs. In 2012, the project already received the French-German Human Rights Award for this work. The organization works in a non-profit, transparent and professional manner and is committed to equality, justice and the rights of children and young people day after day.
The work of the aid project is diverse and covers various areas of everyday life in Costa Rica. The foundation of the entire organization is solidarity. Here people should come together, meet, exchange, learn from each other, help each other and above all experience mutual respect and appreciation. To make this possible, the organization creates a safe space for all people who need it. The center is a modern, clean, creative and colorful public space that everyone participates in designing, decorating and maintaining. It is open to the community 24 hours a day, 7 days a week, and everyone is heartily welcomed and welcomed here. Nationality, language and religion – none of that matters here, but friendliness and harmony, honesty and integrity, compassion and mutual respect.
The focus of the aid project is on the education, the health and the well-being of those affected. The basis for a carefree life is the mental and physical health of children and adolescents, because only then can they develop further, continue their education and one day lead a better life through their personal achievements. To this end, there are a wide variety of programs initiated by the charity.
The After-School Program is aimed at children and young people who have so far experienced inadequate education. They are taught and supported in a wide range of subjects by volunteers and project staff at 19 locations in the region. Subjects include: Homework help, English, art and creativity, computer lessons and various sports such as swimming, martial arts, soccer, dance, yoga or surfing. Every week, over 600 children benefit from the courses offered.
In addition to the programs, courses and activities, the organization also offers psychological care for children and young people and educational counseling for families. Victims of violence and sexual abuse get the help they need here to process what they have experienced. Workshops on difficult topics such as gender-based violence, bullying, alcoholism or sex education are also offered to help solve serious problems in society.
However, not only children and young people, but also entire families are to be helped. Thus, volunteers and staff of the organization visit families living in extreme poverty. They receive support such as food, clothing, furniture and school supplies for the children, as well as help with applying for government funds and medical care for their families. In addition, they are assisted in finding work. For example, there is childcare for children between the ages of two and twelve, which allows their parents to work and earn money for their families.
Sustainability and environmental protection also play a major role in the organization. Projects are created to rebuild and clean schools, beaches and streets in collaboration with other organizations, companies and public institutes. In every course, workshop and activity, environmental education and recycling are part of the program. The participants of the project will learn and understand why it is important to take care of themselves, the community and their environment.
As diverse as the work of the aid project is, as diverse are your tasks as a volunteer. The organization works together with the society of Guanacaste, with children, young people but also adults of all ages in various areas of everyday life. Therefore, this project lives from the help of volunteers. You are needed! Bring your strengths, interests and especially your heart for people into the work and experience a unique and enriching project. The experiences you will gain here will stay with you for a long time, make you grow and change your view on life fundamentally. Most importantly, you will have a fantastic time with the locals, staff and volunteers from all over the world.
Get involved in the After-School Program and organize classes, courses and workshops on various topics. Are you creative and love art? You have a favorite sport? You’re great at English and good at explaining? Or you just feel like getting involved with kids and their schoolwork? You can also set up courses on special topics such as health, world news, tolerance and respect, positive communication, environmental protection and waste separation or your own culture. There are no limits to your creativity, and your help is much needed and appreciated. You will become a person of trust and respect for the children and young people and you will be able to teach them a lot.
If you feel up to it, you can also participate in home visits to the supported families or, especially if you already have experience in this area, help with physiotherapy for the children with physical disabilities.
But there are also many exciting tasks to do beyond teaching. The administration of the center welcomes your assistance. Help with computer work, and grounds maintenance (e.g. decorating, repairs, organizing clothing and supplies, etc.). To that end, there are always donation drives going on that you can get involved with.
Do you love books? Then you can work in the project’s own library and promote the reading behavior of the children and young people through cool activities, actions and games. In the computer room, they will be taught how to use the Internet and social networks correctly and safely.
Or are you a marketing ace? Help the rescue center with managing the social media channels and draw attention to the center’s work with up-to-date and exciting content.
The headquarters of the organization is located in the beautiful small and quiet town of Huacas on the Nicoya Peninsula, just a few kilometers from the surfing stronghold of Tamarindo.
Not many tourists come to Huacas. The place is not overcrowded, authentic and thus radiates the typical laid-back Costa Rican attitude towards life. Due to the diverse landscape of the region, most of the inhabitants live from agriculture. The fresh local food can be sampled in the first-class restaurants here and you can enjoy Costa Rican cuisine.
Huacas has the perfect location for fabulous excursions in the surrounding area. Numerous paradise-like dream beaches, the kind you often only see in movies, are nearby, some only 15 minutes away. For example Playa Tamarindo. There you can experience the laid-back tropical vibe and relax under palm trees. If you’re more in the mood for exercise, Tamarindo also offers perfect surfing conditions. Also a visit to the unique beach Playa Conchal is definitely worth it! The special thing about this beach is that the coastline is not made of fine sand, but entirely of shells, which makes the sea water crystal clear and turquoise. The tourist villages on the beaches also invite you to go shopping and feast. In the bars you can make friends with locals and tourists from all over the world.
If you have a big heart for people, a positive attitude and enthusiasm, you are exactly right and you will love volunteering. You should have a desire to work with people and be motivated to help them in all situations. You should also have a certain amount of independence and sense of responsibility and enjoy being surrounded by children. Since you will be living in a foreign culture, a certain openness and willingness to adapt to your new home is also an advantage.
The national language in Costa Rica is Spanish. You will be dealing with many locals who have little to no knowledge of English. Good basic knowledge of the Spanish language is therefore essential. You are also welcome to take part in a language course organized by us on site.
You will live with a host family in a district of Tamarindo. The family’s house consists of two areas, one where the family lives and the other where the volunteers live. In total, the volunteer area consists of 4 bedrooms, a bathroom and a living area with kitchen. You will live in a single room with a shared bathroom. The volunteers have their own area where they can stay.
The host family is happy for the volunteers to participate in the family’s activities. Volunteers are welcome to participate in excursions on weekends, for example to the family’s farm in the countryside.
Meals are included in the program price, your host mother will cook Costa Rican specialties for you twice a day from Monday to Friday. On the weekends you can prepare something for yourself in the kitchen. On request, the project can also be booked without meals.
The organization can be reached in about 10 minutes by bus. The bus leaves about 100 meters from the house. The costs are about 5 Euro per day, which have to be paid by the volunteer.
The beaches of Tamarindo are about 2 km away from the accommodation and can also be reached by bus or on foot.
Depending on availability, you will stay with the host family or in a similar accommodation.
YOUR CONTACT PERSON IN COSTA RICA
Lisa is German and emigrated to Costa Rica with her Costa Rican husband. Before that, she has visited the country a few times and therefore already knows very well about the culture, traditions and local conditions. After falling in love with the country and its people, she decided to live where others vacation. She speaks fluent Spanish as well as German and English. Lisa will be happy to welcome you in San José with her warm and funny nature and is eager to introduce you to her beautiful adopted country. As your local contact person, she will answer all your questions and you can always approach her if you need help. Lisa will take care of you during the introductory meeting in San José. For questions of any kind during your stay in Latin America, an English-speaking contact person is available via WhatsApp in the same time zone.
SERVICES AND PRICES
Single Room (Without meals):
- 1st month in starter package: 1.170,00 €
- Extension month: 580,00 €
- As 2nd or 3rd program: 940,00 €
Single Room (With meals):
- 1st month in the starter package: 1.350,00 €
- Extension month: 770,00 €
- As 2nd or 3rd program: 1.120,00 €
Find out more about our services here.
“The children at school were always full of energy, up for any fun and joyful and grateful that I played with them. This energy has always fascinated me very much, pleased and also infected me myself.”
„”Sometimes it just takes an effort to take the first step. WanderWorld helps you do just that. They pave the way for your trip abroad. You’re not alone, you’ll be prepared, and you’ll meet people along the way. If you’re afraid to go out on your own and think community service is cool, definitely check out their programs.“