Costa Rica is known for its amazing natural beauty, biodiversity, eco-tourism, and warm, relaxed culture. As a volunteer in this Central American republic, you’ll immerse yourself in a nation of undisturbed rainforests, peaceful atmosphere (the Costa Rican army was abolished in 1948) and “Pura Vida” lifestyle. Costa Ricans are friendly, relaxed, and willing to lend a hand, or even a home, in times of need. Slow down and appreciate a different pace of life – you’ll feel at home in this family-oriented culture.
United Planet is the US and Canadian member of the International Cultural Youth Exchange, or ICYE. As a volunteer in Costa Rica, you will be hosted by ACI, ICYE’s Costa Rican partner organization. As an international non-profit, ACI has promoted cross-cultural exchange between young people all over the world since 1967.
For the month of December, we would like to recognize Brett Clarke, who volunteered for 6 months in Costa Rica, August – January 2015. He worked with students with special needs at a high school located in a small neighborhood in the capital city of San Jose. To celebrate Brett’s dedication to fostering cross-cultural understanding, those who enroll for an individual, Short-Term or Long-Term Quest to Costa Rica during the month of December will save $150 off their Quest fee*!
*Please note that this promotion does not apply to group Quests. To take advantage of the discount you will need to enroll between 12/1/16 and 12/31/16 at the stroke of midnight, New Year’s eve 2017. Additionally, you must begin your Quest by August 31, 2017. This promotion cannot be combined with other United Planet discounts.
Volunteers work with children who live on the street. Tasks include taking care of the children, helping with homework, and playing games. The goal of these projects is to further the education and personal development of the children they support.
Volunteers assist and provide companionship to elderly citizens in a residential setting. Volunteers’ tasks consist of providing company for residents, organizing activities, and occasionally assisting with physical therapy. Help in the kitchen and other manual work are also likely to be involved.
Volunteers assist with the conservation of native wildlife, including various species of plants, birds, invertebrates, or primates. The objective of these projects is to protect endangered species and reintroduce them into the wild. Volunteer duties include, but are not limited to observing and taking notes on animal behavior and helping to maintain the gardens and trails of the National Parks.
The ruins are the site of Costa Rica’s oldest church which was built somewhere between 1575 and 1580. In addition to the ruins, there are other nearby attractions to visit, such as Tapanti National Park, which is the site of the largest known butterfly in the Americas, the Thysania Agripina.
Take a relaxing soak in the Tabacon Hot Springs, explore the Venado Caves, or see the La Fortuna Waterfall. There are seemingly endless amounts of things to do at this national park.
The Playa Flamingo is just one of the many beautiful beaches in Costa Rica. You can do much more than relax at this beach; learn how to surf or sail, go fishing, or come face to face with exotic fish by going diving.
The fire show is put on by the Fire Dancing School and takes place in the center of Montezuma. This is a free and exciting show that displays the fire dancing art in Costa Rica. It is an excellent experience to witness, you don’t want to miss if you are in the area.
United Planet Quests are designed to be immersive, authentic, comprehensive and provide you everything you’ll need to succeed. The program elements allow you to engage fully with a new culture, forge strong relationships, and challenge yourself. Most importantly, we partner with the community to ensure your experience will be important, relevant and helpful to the community you serve.
|Start Date||6 month fee||1 year fee||Early Bird Deposit Deadline||Regular Deposit Deadline||Late Deposit Deadline|
|August 2017||$10,265||$13,645||Monday, March 6, 2017||Monday, May 8, 2017||Monday, May 8, 2017|
|January 2018||$10,265||$13,645||Monday, July 31, 2017||Monday, September 4, 2017||Monday, September 18, 2017|
Enroll by the Early Bird Deadline and take $300 off your Quest fee.
Please note that deposits received after the Regular Deadline (before the Late Deadline) require an additional $150 fee.
We want you to succeed. That means having in place the support our volunteers need. We don't just drop you in country and hope for the best. We provide training before you leave … language exposure … 24/7 in-country support … support for your host family … accommodations, meals and airport transportation … activities and excursions. The whole idea is to make the experience successful and productive for you and the host community, and we have found that these things are crucial. Remember that we are a non-profit, mission-driven organization – we wouldn’t spend money on something that wasn’t important.