This trip can be tailor made throughout the year to suit your requirements
Responsible tourism: School expedition volunteering with turtles in Costa Rica
The land we bought in 1989 was being logged and used as cattle pasture. Today's thriving forest supports an increasing amount and variety of wildlife; many of the thirty three species of mammals are on the IUCN red list. Sightings of jaguar and ocelot demonstrate a richness of wildlife that supports such predators in such a small area. We have become an important migratory route for butterflies travelling north in spring from as far away as Venezuela and returning in the autumn. In 2009 we obtained funding to buy 200ha to act as buffer zone against banana plantations and we have been actively reforesting this area with native species.
The leatherback turtle project has been an outstanding success poaching is down to less than 1% and we are now ending our record year of over 1200 nests.
We collect and recycle everything from the beach and the reserve. Organic waste is composted and used for the vegetable garden. What is not re used in the Reserve is given to a women's local cooperative for their handicraft and what is not used they sell to recycling companies
Having started with two people we have now nine local artisans making: bracelets, anklets, rings, key rings, book markers, bags, and paintings. All of which must be of local or recycled material. Takings can be several thousand dollars in a year encouraging others to try their hand. At our instigation a number We have opened a shop in the Reserve to sell handicrafts, without mark-ups,made by local people. of local people are now cultivating vegetables and rearing chickens for the Reserve to buy in large regular amounts. This also provides important occupation an income Part of the work of our volunteers is to engage with local school children and bring them to the reserve for an introduction to environmental education. Some of our cooks and guards are eagerly taking English lessons from our English speaking field assistants This is vital for them if they wish to progress. We also select to train a few school leavers as field assistants every year.