Costa Rica
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Costa Rica is one of Latin America´s top destinations for volunteer tourism. Most of the country´s organizations specialize in environmentalism and conservation, offering volunteers the opportunity to work in national parks, learn about organic farming and sustainable living, rescue and preserve wildlife (especially turtles), and protect the forests. The ecological federation, FECON, maintains a list of the country´s active environmental volunteer projects ( There are also programs for teaching English and working with street youth and other at-risk children. Many US colleges and universities offer volunteer/travel programs, as well as the Peace Corps and Habitat for Humanity. and are also great resources for volunteer opportunities.

For organic farming and other agricultural programs, try the following organizations: Finca IPE in the coastal mountains of the Pacific Coast, (, Punta Mona, along the Southern Caribbean Coast (, or Rancho Mastatal,located on the edge of a rainforest in Puriscal County (www.ranchomastatalcom).

Those interested in working within the national parks should visit the website for ASVO (Asociación de Voluntarios para el Servicio en las Areas Protegidas), at

For work with children and teaching English, check out Amerispan Unlimited (

Volunteers are generally responsible for their own airfare, and for paying a stipend that covers room and board during their stay (usually $10-$15 dollars a day). For more economical options, try, which lists several sites in Costa Rica where volunteers receive room and board in exchange for their work. Website membership costs ₤10 for one year.

Here are some related tips to help plan your trip to Costa Rica: When to go, Safety, Safety, Studying Spanish, Eco-lodges, Embassies , Tourism, Safety, Travel Insurance in Costa Rica and PRETOMA Sea Turtle Restoration Project.

12 Oct 2010

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