Costa Rica

Green Life Volunteers

I did a one-month-long internship for GLV in January and February of 2024. I combined this with the Teaching Kids and Community Center project in Puerto Jimenez. I feel really grateful to have worked for someone with such a beautiful organization. I helped strengthen Green Life's presence on social media and different volunteer websites and even though I was there for just a month, I feel like I have been able to make a difference for Janina's organization and that makes me very happy!
Especially the combination with the project at the library was absolutely perfect for me. I was able to fully immerse myself in the Costa Rican culture, by staying with a host family. They were truly my family away from home and I got close with them throughout my stay. I was able to set up an English summer camp for the local kids and apart from that, I got to help out at the library and improve the place.
I had a wonderful time and would recommend both projects to anyone who wants to experience the "normal" work life in Costa Rica. It is super special to feel a part of the strong community the people have built in Puerto Jimenez, I will cherish that feeling for the rest of my life.
Janina helped me out so much during the application process. She helped my prepare my international and national flights. Gave me all the information I needed for traveling to Costa Rica and prepared everything for when I got there. We met up a couple of times for work and she took me out twice, to have lunch outside of work. I got to experience up close that for Janina, every volunteer is special and different. She puts so much effort in every single person, I cannot imagine any other program will give you the same treatment. I don't have anything bad to say, it was absolutely the best experience of my life and i will recommend Green Life Volunteers to everyone that asks.

Program: Volunteer Abroad
Location: Costa Rica
Posted: Feb 25, 2024
Overall:
10
Support:
10
Value:
10

Green Life Volunteers

I volunteered for two weeks at the Mariposa camp in Carate for turtle conservation, and these were absolutely two of the most special weeks of my life. I would recommend the COPROT camps to anyone who wants to experience this beautiful life in one of the most rural and biologically diverse places on earth.
The team at the camp made me feel extremely welcome from the start. I have made connections with the people there and learned things from them (and about myself) that I will never forget.

I am normally a person who likes comfort and city life, but I wanted to do something outside of my comfort zone and I am so happy I did!! I saw so many amazing animals, like the scarlet macaws, a baby alligator, different types of monkeys, and of course the mama and baby turtles. Almost every evening I went to the beach to enjoy the breath-taking sunsets. The peace in this place is amazing and is something I will never forget.
Even though the camp has a pretty simple layout, it is super clean and there is enough space for everyone to relax. Waking up in the middle of the night to go on a patrol is definitely not easy, but it is all worth it, when you get to help a mama turtle with her nest or see wild babies hatch. You need to love a bit of hard work, but if you do, the rewards are truly unforgettable.
Once again: I would advise this to anyone. Get out of your comfort zone and do it, because staying at the COPROT camp is an experience you will hold on to for the rest of your life!!

I worked with Green Life Volunteers for this project and I am extremely grateful for all the help I got leading up to and during my volunteer time. Janina was super nice and actually recommended the turtle conservation project to me. She helped me book the national flights, choose a hostel in San Jose, get a taxi to and from the project, and much more. She has become a true friend during my time here and I would absolutely recommend working with Green Life Volunteers to anyone who wants to volunteer in Costa Rica.

Program: Volunteer Abroad
Location: Costa Rica
Posted: Feb 13, 2024
Overall:
10
Support:
10
Value:
10

Green Life Volunteers

My son and husband participated in Green Life’s biological research station volunteer program during the Christmas holidays. I cannot express our gratitude for the excellent experience they had. They are both naturalists and animal enthusiasts. They had a wonderful time and learned a lot from the experts there. The center was professional, well organized, and the people were very friendly. The administration by Green Life Volunteer’s central office was also outstanding. If you’re looking for a volunteer project involving animals and nature, this is the perfect place.

 

- Leigh (50)

Program: Volunteer Abroad
Location: Costa Rica
Posted: Jun 13, 2022
Overall:
7
Support:
7
Value:
7

Green Life Volunteers

volunteering at the wildlife sanctuary was truly an educational and amazing experience. The work they are doing there with rehabilitating the hurt animals is truly amazing. It definitely took us a couple days to get settled in but wouldn’t have want to miss it for the world. Everybody was so friendly, flexible and accommodating. One of my favorite parts was rehabilitating the baby sloths, which definitely made other tasks such as cage cleaning worth it! To everyone who is part of this project, thank you so much for letting me be part of it and please keep up the amazing work as i am sure its making a great positive difference to costa rica’s wildlife:)

Program: Volunteer Abroad
Location: Costa Rica
Posted: Sep 9, 2021
Overall:
10
Support:
10
Value:
10

Green Life Volunteers

I can say that volunteering at the turtle conservation project was one of the most extraordinary experiences of my life. I stayed 3 weeks in Nombre de Jesus and it went beyond my expectations, all the people who work at Green Life Volunteers were very kind, since my arrival in San Jose, as at the project.
I worked directly with Ravier, coordinator of the project, and Gerardo, assistant at the time and we had a very good coexistence in these 3 weeks, it was possible to notice their knowledge of the subject when it comes to turtles, I learned a lot.
I really recommend the project to any volunteer, besides the knowledge and gratification that you will get, I've still had the luck to meet other amazing volunteers from all over the world. It was amazing and I consider being a volunteer again in the future.

Program: Volunteer Abroad
Location: Costa Rica
Posted: Sep 3, 2020
Overall:
10
Support:
10
Value:
10

Green Life Volunteers

My boyfriend and I took part in the reforestation project of Green Life Volunteering last November for about 10 days and it was an amazing experience!! We ended up in Rancho Quemado, a small village in the Corcobado National Park, where we helped a biologist and some local volunteers of the Monitoreo Biologico Comunitario association in their every day duties.It was interesting to see the many activities that are going on and we were happy to help out for whatever it was necessary to do at that moment: working at the tree nursery and planting trees, bird/mammals/tree monitoring in the forest, organizing a festival for the wild boar protection program and many others... Despite the fact that it was less reforestation then we expected, it was a really nice experience. The people were welcoming and we had the chance to see up close the amazing nature of Costa Rica (flora and fauna).
Janina, the coordinator of Green Life Volunteering, was really helpful for organizing everything about our stay, and patient to answer to our questions! :)

Program: Volunteer Abroad
Location: Costa Rica
Posted: Jan 31, 2020
Overall:
10
Support:
7
Value:
9

Green Life Volunteers

I spent one month volunteering in Osa through Green Life Volunteers as part of my gap year. I wanted to go to Costa Rica to experience the wonderful biodiversity and warm weather while both giving back in some way and not paying too much money. GLV was very good for this. I found that the costs were very reasonable and affordable. I liked the fact that I was supporting a small-scale, non-profit organization genuinely interested in contributing to awesome eco-projects, especially in contrast with some of the other big, for-profit volunteering companies that are out there. Janina was very helpful in the organization of my trip. She provided recommendations for domestic airlines and hotels between my international and domestic flights, both of which worked out perfectly well. When I got there, I found she was super friendly and made sure I felt welcomed in my new environment. She provided regular check ins to make sure all was going smoothly at the various projects. You can tell she is very involved with the local community. On my last day, she even gave me a ride to the airport, which I greatly appreciate.

I spent two weeks at the Fundacion Neotropica biological research station. It is located right in the jungle, making it a great place to experience the rainforest. Andrea, the woman in charge of that program, was very nice and helpful, connecting me with different people to find things to do on my off time on the weekends. One time when we hiked out to a beautiful waterfall in the jungle to take a dip. The other staff members were also very nice and accommodating, even though we couldn’t verbally communicate too well because of my lack of Spanish ability. I spent most of my volunteering time there building a vegetable garden, which was good for me as I appreciate hard, active work. There was a range of other thing I did too, all of which were aligned with my interests and values. Some days I would take pictures while Andrea taught classes about climate change and migratory birds at local schools. I helped with a mangrove restoration project one day, and another I helped lay primer on a pier that local kids would paint and mural about the local ecology onto. To me this work was very rewarding and felt like it made a real difference. Much of my off time I spent reading and learning about plants in the library. Overall my time at Fundacion Neotropica was super interesting and rewarding. I would recommend this more to folks who speak Spanish, as the language barrier can be challenging at times. If you have an interest observing rainforest ecology first hand, this is a great place for it!

The latter two weeks of my trip to Costa Rica I spend helping at Osa Interactive Gardens and staying with a host family in Pueto Jimenez. OIG and their butterfly conservation project located in the woods just outside of town was such a wonderful place to volunteer. They converted an old diseased cacao plantation to a biologically diverse garden area complete with a protective butterfly enclosure and a classroom for teaching local students about ecology. Rayner and Colleen are very friendly and welcoming, and baby Lobo is super cute. Clair was very kind and helpful in showing me what I needed to do and answering any questions that came up. They only ask that you work mornings, but the atmosphere was so chill and positive that I always wanted to come back for the afternoons too. I was always made to feel appreciated for the work I did there. Typically we would take care of caterpillars and pupae, deal with compost, or spread gravel along trails. I think the work they are doing there to promote conservation and education is great, and I was so happy to be a part of it. I stayed with Linda Saxe in Puerto Jimenez. Her and her son were very kind and accommodating. They both spoke English, which was very helpful given my lack of Spanish ability. They were very patient with me when I would make mistakes adjusting to different sorts of appliances I wasn’t used to. The food was delicious too! The guest room has everything you need, including privacy as it is separate from the rest of the house. It’s very conveniently located: right in town. There’s a beautiful beach within walking distance to spend down time at. There’s a lot to explore in the town, like many cool shops and places to grab a bite to eat in between meals. I definitely would recommend this to anyone with an interest conservation and a desire to experience Costa Rican culture.

Program: Gap Year
Location: Costa Rica
Posted: Dec 20, 2019
Overall:
9
Support:
9
Value:
9

International Volunteer HQ (IVHQ)

I volunteered with IVHQ and it was a fantastic experience. I got to meet so many so many people, learn so much, and get pushed out of my comfort zone. I would absolutely recommend this program to anyone who wants an enriching experience, it was fantastic and all the staff involved was infinitely helpful.

Program: Volunteer Abroad
Location: Costa Rica
Posted: Dec 19, 2019
Overall:
9
Support:
10
Value:
9

International Volunteer HQ (IVHQ)

I found IVHQ last December. They had the cheapest cost yet still seemed to provide a ton of support and assistance as well as great reviews, which were all important to me. The project I chose, Teaching English in Manuel Antonio, Costa Rica, was run by another company that IVHQ partners with and although that I was hesitant at first, I found that both companies worked very well together and both equally kept in contact with me and helped me as I prepared to travel. Maximo Nivel was the partner company who runs projects in Guatemala, Costa Rica, and Peru and they do a wonderful job. IVHQ was involved with everything and supported me up until I departed and then Maximo took over, yet IVHQ still checked in throughout the trip and I felt that between the both of them, I had as much support as needed, and had someone to call no matter what. From the moment I was picked up at the airport, to my first night at a host family in San Jose, and then finally my transfer to Manuel Antonio the following day, I felt safe and secure and I was with other volunteers who ended up becoming my host family and some really great friends. The project was very basic as far as the supplies and the setup, it was located in a community building as a part of the church and the room was very basic having only tables, chairs and a white board with some markers, but what else do you need with imagination? Classes were held from 3-4:30 for the children whose ages ranged from 4 to 10 and then adult classes were from 4:30-6 and we ended up splitting the adult group in half for beginners and intermediate students. This project did require a decent amount of planning due to the lack of a curriculum or established lessons, but it wasn't difficult since the local team works with you and has many resources for you to use. Overall, the best part of the experience was seeing how much of an impact you have on your students, helping them do better at work, get better grade sin school, get into college and feel confident when speaking with the large amount of visitors from all over the world. Plus, every morning and weekend were our free time and we did so much, such as visiting La Fortuna/Arenal in the north part of the country, touring Manuel Antonio National Park, taking catamaran cruises to local islands off the coast, and really becoming locals exploring the town and finding our favorite spots. Overall, it was an amazing few weeks and I cried as the plane took off to head home because part of my heart will always be left with the people of Costa Rica, although I was excited to be in the world of air conditioning again!

Program: Volunteer Abroad
Location: Costa Rica
Posted: Oct 23, 2019
Overall:
9
Support:
9
Value:
10

International Volunteer HQ (IVHQ)

There comes times in everyones life where we look back on the many things we have done, big or small, and we say "that was something worth doing - that was something worth my time". That is exactly how I feel with volunteering through IVHQ. I did something that impacted, not only me, but also the people I worked alongside for a month. It was an experience where I can honestly assert that I helped make a difference in a community. Now, I am just dealing with the itch of wanting to return and do it all over again!

Program: Volunteer Abroad
Location: Costa Rica
Posted: Oct 12, 2019
Overall:
10
Support:
10
Value:
10

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