Conservation & Community in Costa Rica Middle School Special
- Placement Location: Barra Honda National Park in Guanacaste Province
- Types of Placements: National Park and local school
- Accommodation: Shared dormitory
- Age Requirements: 12 - 15 years old
Discover the unique culture and traditions of Costa Rica and help protect the environment on our Conservation & Community Middle School Special. Spend your summer getting to know students your age from around the world as you work together in the Barra Honda National Park and a nearby community.
Work with other students on wildlife research and maintenance work at the national park. Your activities will happen under the direction and guidance of our experienced Projects Abroad staff. During your program you can get involved with several activities:
- Contribute to the taxa list: You will help with putting together an inventory of the animals you see in the national park. This is a new initiative approved by the Costa Rican government.
- Bird surveys: Identify birds and collect information about different species using GPS, binoculars, and books.
- Bat program: Help our staff capture, mark, and identify bats at night. You will not touch the bats directly, but you will help staff measure, weigh, and mark them with special paint.
- Butterfly program: Work with staff to capture and release butterflies using traps, and identify those you see with the aid of books.
- Work in the nursery garden: Join reforestation efforts. Plant saplings that have been growing in the park nursery, and assist with maintenance work in the nursery.
To create awareness around conservation in the community where you are placed, you will spend time at a school where you will discuss important conservation issues with local students. This will be a great opportunity to talk about the work being done at the park, and to discuss what everyone can do to help. You can also get involved with giving the school a new coat of paint.
While in the park, you will get to do more than just volunteer – you will also get the opportunity to go trekking and caving with professional local guides. Our experienced staff will join you as you explore the underground caverns of the Tercipelo Cave.
Middle School Volunteer Trip to Costa Rica
During your stay in Costa Rica, you will stay in safe and secure accommodation within the national park. At night, you will sleep in same-sex dormitories and our staff will be right next door if you need anything during the night. This the perfect opportunity to build friendships with the other volunteers from around the world and get to know more about the Costa Rican way of life from our staff. Our cook lives at the camp and is always happy to prepare traditional Costa Rican meals, as well as special meals for those who have specific dietary requirements. She is also an excellent dancer and would be happy to teach you a move or two during your stay!
We have organized social events to make sure you have the full Costa Rican experience. You will have opportunities to explore local culture and traditions, like learning how to dance to Latin rhythms cook local dishes. Over the weekend, there will be an organized beach trip to Nacascolo, which has white sands and crystal blue waters. Catch a tan, go for a swim, or spend the day relaxing in the shade provided by the lush tropical dry forest.