Green Life Volunteers

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9.6 / 10 after 23 Reviews Based on overall, support & value average ratings
Program website: www.glvolunteers.com

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I participated in the first run of the Solar Volunteer Project and it far exceeded my expectations. There were two days of theory on off grid solar taught by an excellent solar technician in the area brad. Followed by hands on classes on building solar panels from inexpensive materials where we worked along side locals who also wanted to learn. The two week program also included hands on installation of panels on a school that previously had no electricity or lighting, a visit to an off grid permaculture farm, inevitable chances to immerse in the biodiversity of the area, and the opportunity to experience the chill night life of the town. The group bonded and became like family. Was truly an unforgettable experience.

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Location:
Posted: August 8, 2016
Overall:
10
Support:
9
Value:
9
By: JayWye
Age:
22

An absolutely fantastic experience. Amazingly informative on the practical aspects of solar, while at the same time extremely rewarding and helpful to the host community. I actually got to see the lights go on in a school house that had been powerless for forty years. Mixed with the project was an absolutely amazing adventure, got to experience the wonderful biodiversity of the Osa, from monkeys and dolphins to you name it, and enjoy the exciting night life, salsa dancing in the local bars and relaxing with a beer on the beach. As well, the small structure of GL volunteers means that it relies highly on local businesses and all the funding goes directly into the community. Above and beyond expectations in reward and fun! Janina is the best!

Also, I was put in a host family on the beach with tropical scarlet macaws serenading me on my way to the workshops. Couldn't recommend enough.

Program:
Location:
Posted: July 22, 2016
Overall:
10
Support:
10
Value:
10
By: JakeH
Age:
30

I participated in the 2-week solar power workshop in June 2016. I came to the workshop with a general interest in clean energy and a desire for an immersive travel experience.

In addition to learning all things solar (theory, system design and maintenance, installation, and how to build a panel using cosmetically defective cells), I made chocolate from start to finish on an off-grid farm, practiced my Spanish with the locals, hiked to a waterfall in Matapalo, volunteered at a local butterfly farm, surfed, kayaked, went horseback riding, and observed an abundance of wildlife (dolphins, monkeys, toucans, scarlet macaws, and crocodiles to name a few).

Green Life Volunteers does an excellent job of balancing work and play. My experiences were life changing and I wish I could have stayed longer! Highly recommend.

Program:
Location:
Posted: July 19, 2016
Overall:
10
Support:
10
Value:
10
Age:
27

Once upon a time I was looking for an opportunity to volunteer and install solar energy abroad and learn more about off-grid PV systems. I stumbled across the Green Life Volunteers organization through google searching these kind of opportunities in Latin American countries, and Green Life Volunteers offered a Solar Project at the time that lined up exactly with what i was looking for. This was my first time traveling solo abroad so I wanted to make sure that I chose the correct project. It was easy to pick this project because the information provided on the website was so thorough and the program leader, Janina, was very friendly and answered any questions I had. After meeting Janina for the first time I knew this program was going to be awesome.

The Solar Project Program offered a variety of things throughout the experience. It offered host family placement, transportation from the airport, two days of instruction on battery based off-grid solar systems, a building a solar panel from scratch workshop, installation of an off-grid PV system, an opportunity to help teach a local high school class about renewable energy, as well as free time to enjoy the richness of what costa rica has to offer. This program also provided full cultural immersion, as throughout the entire experience you are living, working and hanging out with real Costa Rican People.

I would definitely recommend this program to folks looking help the less fortunate, and those looking for some experience regarding solar energy. I would love to participate in an experience like this again!

Program:
Location:
Posted: July 14, 2016
Overall:
9
Support:
10
Value:
9
By: jbstaron8
Age:
25

I volunteered on the Sea Turtle conservation project via Green Life Volunteers and absolutely loved my experience.

I was travelling alone, and was a bit worried about finding my way to the remote location where the Sea Turtle project was. I had absolutely nothing to worry about. Janina, the program coordinator made sure to answer all my questions and send me all the information I needed. During the months previous to my departure, we exchanged many emails and I felt reassured by her quick and informative responses. The location of the project was quite far from my original destination in San José, however there was someone from the project to help me along at every step of the way. Someone picked me up form the airport, I then had someone from the project brief me and answer any additional question I may have and then bring me to the bus station. There was then another person from the project to meet me as I transfered buses...I felt very safe.

The project itself was not exactly as I imagined, but I kept an open mind which I think is a very important thing to do when going to this type of project. The area was indeed very remote as I had been told. It was the leatherback sea turtle nesting season. We did some work during the day- which was kept short as it was so incredibly hot and we mostly worked by night. this is important to know about working with nesting Sea Turtles. You will be up most of the night. You NEED to be in shape. I consider myself someone of great shape and was sometimes out of breath. You patrol in complete darkness (the turtles don't like white light) and walk quite a few kilometres per patrol. The sand is soft and the jungle is full of fallen trees, it's not a simple walk on the beach But you get to appreciate the beauty of Costa Rica at night, clear skies full of shooting stars and fireflies so bright they hurt your eyes and glow in the dark plankton at your feet!

Maybe it's hard work- but there's nothing as exciting and as rewarding as finding a nesting turtle and then making sure that her eggs are safely collected and counted and returned to the hatchery for safe keeping. Poachers are real, and we had some nest stolen while I was at the project and it was absolutely heart breaking. My favorite moment was helping a turtle with a missing back flipper lay her eggs...she couldn't grab on to the edges of her nest so our patrol leader helped us build a sand ledge for her so she could grip on and it worked!

I met so many wonderful people during this project, people who love animals and love travelling. People willing to give their free time to a great cause.

Some advice to appreciate this experience even more. Bring bug spray, a lot of it. You will need to wear it, the mosquitos will bite you. At some point you will realize that there isn't much you can do. They were biting me through my clothes but luckily I had some bite soothing cream. Bring towelettes- sometimes there is no running water and you will be sweaty and dirty. And bring snacks, We received 3 wonderful meals a day, but sometimes as you work nights and it's quite physical work, you do get a little hungry!

I would strongly suggest experiencing this amazing adventure. It will most likely be one of the best moments of your life.

Program:
Location:
Posted: April 26, 2016
Overall:
9
Support:
9
Value:
9
By: Jamie14
Age:
30

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