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Volunteering, Animal Conservation and Spanish

Volunteering, Animal Conservation and Spanish

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Pris fra 22600 NOK
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Varighet
29 dager
Starter i
Santa Teresa
Avslutter i
Santa Teresa
Travel to the best places in Costa Rica , learn Spanish and volunteer
This program is a combination of learning Spanish whilst exploring the beautiful hinterland of Nicoya Peninsula and gettin a real feel for the biodiversity of this special part of the world. You will also be volunteering at Natuwa, an amazing wildlife rescue centre and also at ASVO Montezuma, volunteering with turtles,as well as volunteering in the local community of Santa Teresa.
Reiserute

Volunteering, Animal Conservation and Spanish

Week 1 Wildlife Rescue Centre

During this week, you will support the wildlife sanctuary, Natuwa. Wildlife volunteers who come to NATUWA join our team to help put together a daily routine about caring for the animals. The performance includes feeding monkeys, jaguars, tapirs, macaws, sloths, and many more. In addition, participate in the animal rehabilitation and rescue process. Tasks are carried out under the direction of a veterinarian, biologist, the center director, and professional NATUWA staff’s operation. It is an excellent opportunity for the volunteer to learn to manage wild animals avoiding accidents that endanger the physical integrity of the animals and the people who care for them, and, of course, conservation. This volunteer project is quite different from other Wildlife Santuaries around Costa Rica. We never have a shortage of work! And have over 500 animals that need daily care. If you are lack motivation or passion for animal care and conservation, this may not be the project for you (¡and that’s ok!). Our daily schedule can be intense, but the work here is delightful!

The sanctuary is continuously operating to improve the lives of the jaguars, tapirs, sloths, macaws, and many more Costa Ricas wild animals. Volunteers will participate in activities such as:
- Feeding and providing water for the animals, including baby animals
- Assisting animals in case of emergency.
- Participate in efforts to rehabilitate and release animals.
- Planting trees.
- Assisting in giving tours of the sanctuary.
- Maintenance of the sanctuary, animal enclosures and property.
- Constructing organic structures for the animals.
- Participate in the environmental enrichment of all types of animals.
- Agricultural production (for volunteers and animals).
- Cleaning and enclosures and under animal feeding stations
- Providing fresh-cut grass to our herbivores.
- And anything else that needs to be done

Hours of volunteering, schedule of the day
06:00-08:00 - Morning feeding of animals with supervision.
08:00-08:15 - Breakfast
08:15-10:30 - Daily tasks
10:45-12:00 - Daily tasks
12:00-13:00 - Lunch, WiFi, and nap time
13:00-15:00 - Afternoon feeding of animals with supervision. After the afternoon feeding, volunteers are free to do whatever they would like for the rest of the day
18:00 Dinner

The opportunity to volunteer in Costa Rica with wildlife, does not promote the domestication of wild animals. Our primary goal is to raise awareness among people, not about removing organisms from the ecosystem to be used as pets. Therefore, if you intend to touch animals for fun, kiss them, hug them, or talk to them, then this is not the project for you. Otherwise, if you want to give your precious time and learn about these beautiful creatures helping the team to manage them, then this is the place to be.

Week 2 Turtle Sanctuary

You will spend this week at a Turtle Sanctuary that we support, ASVO Montezuma. You’ll be protecting the eggs and hatchlings of Olive Ridley, Black Turtle, Hawksbill and Leatherback species, who visit local ‘semi intensive’ nesting beaches at night to nest. The principle objective of the project is to protect adult female turtles that frequent beaches along this coastline, and their nests, from human predators and wildlife, natural events such as beach erosion and flooding due to high amounts of rainfall in nesting season.

This is achieved by maintenance of infrastructure and surroundings, beach cleaning, night patrols to look for nesting female turtles (in season), transport of food and water, collection of data and releasing baby turtles into the ocean (in season) and the construction of a ‘hatchery’.

Seasonal Support
It is important to note that although turtles nest frequently in peak nesting season (July to November), there will be times where turtle activity is very low. We still need help during most of the year for the construction and maintenance of the hatchery, critical for the upcoming season.

Weeks 3 & 4 Spanish & Volunteering at Camp

Spanish Lessons
You will have 2 x 45 minute Spanish lessons (usually between 09:00-11:00) from Monday to Friday. Tuition is delivered by accredited and licensed teachers and on day one you will receive a short test to establish your level and objectives. These lessons will be tailored to suit all levels from beginner to intermediate and are designed to help you interact and immerse with the local community and enjoy being in a Spanish speaking country.

Volunteering
During weeks 3 and 4 on Monday, Tuesday, Thursday and Friday (2-3 hours per day), you participate in volunteer projects designed to conserve and respect local natural resources. Project work is varied and priorities are seasonal and weather dependent. However, most of our efforts are focused on the following areas:

Beach Conservation
Here we work alongside the Santa Teresa Lifeguards. Having seen the amazing beaches of Santa Teresa, and adjoining Playa Hermosa and Playa Carmen, the recreational opportunities are clear. However, beaches need to be maintained to keep them clear of debris that not only looks unsightly but can cause harm to people and wildlife. Work includes promoting Lifeguard issues with regard to beach safety and etiquette (through signage, presentations and speaking to visitors), organizing clean ups with focus on recycling.

Blue Flag Initiative
Formed in response to water and beach pollution, this government-backed initiative aims to reward communities that adhere to their guidelines on conservation practice. By awarding the Blue Flag, the communities gain international recognition for their beach and can attract more tourists and investment.

Recycling
We are leading the charge in our local community to create as many recycle stations and collection points for plastic waste in particular so that Bionics can easily collect it all once a week from main road. We have built two recycle stations on our street and this has reduced the normal garbage by 30% or more. As a result, on our street alone we collect a huge amount of plastic for Bionics each month.

We clean the beaches of plastic once a week at least and participate in community clean ups on a monthly bases and this month collected close to a ton of recyclable rubbish in one day with the help of about 100 volunteers. We go once a week to the Bionics Depo 30 mins away in Cobano to help them clean, organise and package the plastic for shipment to the USA where they turn it into shoes, T-shirts, building blocks and a whole variety of consumer goods, hence giving real value to this recycled material. This is the future and this is what may just save the planet or make a difference at least. Once this "rubbish" has value people will start to take notice and collect it and turn it into something useful. This way we show our students the full cycle of events, how plastic gets into the eco system, how hard it is to take it out once it's in there, and finally the light at the end of the tunnel, what we can do with it once we collect it.

Tropical Forest
Our main focus is the forests' most important resource - water! You help with the maintenance and supply of our tree nursery; planting carefully selected saplings, gathered seeds and ongoing support of recently planted trees to ensure their success. We support the local Waterkeepers who patrol the river systems of Santa Teresa and neighboring tropical forest resources by helping to report any contamination, clear forest debris and litter from streams before it is washed out to sea and can cause further damage to wildlife, and by maintaining walking/hiking trails that allow visitors to access this beautiful area. It is also a great opportunity to learn about the biodiversity of flora and fauna in this special part of the world.

Jakera Club
The Jakera Club is all about community work with the kids of the Santa Teresa community. Here we team up and work hand in hand hosting extra curriculum activities for kids from our immediate vicinity. Our activities are run by international and local volunteers, and include sports, arts & crafts, English classes, environmental and social awareness activities. We also organise and run out of school activities (including Saturday afternoons) for the kids to appreciate entirely new experiences and adventures, including organised sea safety, beach and kids surf classes as well as nature conservation activities.

Free Time

During the weekends, there are a lot of opportunities to expore the area and try out different activities. If you're into yoga, try a beach session on Sunday mornings: get up a little earlier than usual to enjoy a pre-breakfast yoga session on the beach. Yoga is very popular in this part of the world and 45 mins costs around $15. You can also try white water rafting, horse riding, surfing, kayaking, snorkeling, whale watching, a jungle canopy tour etc. There is always something to do and if it all sounds to active, you can just enjoy the beach or pool.

Please note: Travel on the weekends, or any of the extra activities is at your own expense and risk. We cannot be responsible but, if anything happens, we will of course be there to assist. Please ensure that you have adequate medical insurance before you carry out any activity.

Mandatory Volunteer Requirements

Police Clearance Certificate
Show Proof of Negative PCR Test Result:
You must get a COVID-19 PCR test within 48 hrs of your planned arrival at NATUWA, only if you have not been vaccinated. Your test result must be negative. A rapid test or other test type will qualify if you are vaccinated. You must show your proof of a negative COVID test result upon your arrival.

What Makes a Good Volunteer?

Volunteers need to be flexible and keep an open mind concerning their placements as situations can arise beyond our control which could require you to be placed at a different project than the one you have initially chosen. We will of course always do our utmost to fulfill your initial wishes but do remember that where you are going is quite different from where you are coming and as such one should be prepared for things not always going according to plan.

Volunteering and intercultural travel share a common trait: the more you put into it, the more you get out of it. This program is designed for proactive individuals and groups that are prepared to adapt to the local environment and its current needs. Naturally, the scheduling and activities of our program are subject to change. Alterations in activities are mainly due to changes in local conditions, which we believe is part of what makes overseas programs the interesting adventure and incredible learning experience that they are.

How Long Should I Volunteer?

Our projects range from 1 week up to approx. 30 weeks. Projects have a specified minimum stay, then it’s up to you how long you can commit. In our experience the longer you stay the more you will gain, as your understanding of the project broadens and you take on more responsibilities.
Oversikt

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Overnatting

In Santa Teresa, we have created a jungle paradise complete with swimming pool overlooked by a rich tropical forest bursting with wildlife including capuchin and howler monkeys.

Accommodation is same-gender dorms with beds, and separate toilet and shower facilities (hot and cold water!). Breakfast and lunch are provided.

There is a laundry service in the local town for getting your clothes washed at a very reasonable price. There is also a swimming pool at the location.

Accommodation at Natuwa is in two separate buildings. One building is a typical Costa Rica country style house with one room, including bunk beds, three fans, storage space, and windows. Only for long-term volunteers (4 weeks or more). The second building is a modified shipping container with three rooms. Each room of the container includes two bunk beds, a fan, and storage space for personal items for four people maximum. It is advised for volunteers to bring their mosquito nets. Volunteers must keep their areas free of plastic litter and respect the property of others. The location of the bathrooms and showers are in a separate building adjacent out of the rooms. No hot water is available for the showers. There is an area to do the laundry by using a machine and for drying on clotheslines. WiFi is currently available in volunteer housing.

The Research Centre with AVSO is located in the small town of Montezuma, and the residents of the area are full of positivity and energy. It is an ideal place to conduct research of sea turtles, because on this beach various species of turtles come to nest, such as the Olive Ridley, the leatherback, and the black turtle. You will stay in a rustic wooden building specially constructed to accommodate volunteers. There is a large common area, kitchen and eating area, bunk beds, showers and toilet facilities, running water (and drinking water). The accommodation is really basic and right at the beach with beautiful sunrise views.

You need to bring your travel pillow and a lightweight sleeping bag as well as a mosquito net.

Lokal transport

You can either get to the project on your own, or make your arrival smoother by booking an airport transfer or an arrival package.

Airport Transfer
You can book your project including an airport transfer. Between 01 Jun and 14 Dec there is an airport transfer at 08:00 from San Jose. Between 15 Dec and 31 May there are transfers twice daily at 06:00 and 14:00 from San Jose.

Arrival Package
You can book an arrival package including pick-up from the airport, 1 night in San Jose and transfer to Santa Teresa on the following day. The next day the same transfer times to Santa Teresa apply:
Between 01 Jun and 14 Dec there is an airport transfer at 08:00 from San Jose.
Between 15 Dec and 31 May there are transfers twice daily at 06:00 and 14:00 from San Jose.

Other Transportation
Local transportation during the program is at your own cost, however transfer to the Wildlife Rescue Center is included. If required you can book and pay for a departure transfer locally.

Måltider

Breakfast, lunch, and brunch on weekends are included. Safe drinking water, tea, coffee, natural soft drinks will be provided. Beers and sodas are not included. All food in our camp is organic, sourced from local farmers and fishermen with garnishes and a few extras from our own garden. Our menu is predominantly vegetarian, though we do also serve locally sourced meat and fish. Although menus will be local, they’ll be tempered to western tastes and vegetarians are easily accommodated. Salads, simple soups, tortillas, sweet plantains and local food made of tubers (similar to potatoes) are also popular.

There is a kitchen at the camp where you can make your own food. You will need to help with cleaning dishes and keep your room and public areas tidy.

There are also social nights arranged at camp - pizza night, burger night, Mexican night etc where dinner costs between USD7-10 (not included)..

3 meals a day at Natuwa Wildlife Sanctuary
The meals are typical dishes of Costa Rica. Almost every meal includes rice, beans, or salad. Juice or coffee is offered for every meal. It is very important that you inform us if you have any special diets or food allergies.

During the days at the turtle rescue centre all meals are included.

Vær oppmerksom på

Volunteers will need dark coloured clothing to work at night, preferably long sleeved, flashlight with a red LED if possible, mosquito net, closed toe shoes for turtle patrols that will be comfortable and a waterproof jacket.
Light weight sleeping bag for night patrols and mosquito net are useful and should be in the packing list.

Packing List for Natuwa Wildlife Sanctuary:
- Rubber boots
- Natural repellent (without DEET)*
- Sunscreen
- Mosquito net
- Long pants (working pants)*
- Clothing that dries quickly
- Hat
- Afterbite
- Shower sandals
- Quick drying towel
- Beach items
- Many pairs of socks
- Reusable water bottle
- Topical medicine for allergies
- Allergy pills

*Mandatory items

Optional items:
- Thin bed sheets (one pair is provided)
- Bandana
- Long sleeves
- Rain jacket
- Work gloves
- Books

Volunteering, Animal Conservation and Spanish

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