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Volunteer in Santa Barbara - Costa Rica

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Programme summary:

  • Ages 18+
  • Spanish course
  • Volunteering in different sectors
  • Accommodation in host family or volunteers' house
  • 4 week stay minimum

Destination

Our local partner

Our volunteer programme gives you the opportunity to live and work in Costa Rica, and is avalaible to students aged 18 and over with an intermediate level in Spanish.

Experience the country's diverse culture while improving your Spanish language skills.

  • Work experience abroad: an advantage for your CV

Having experience working abroad always looks great on your CV. That isn't all however, as the majority of interns and volunteers who finish the programme come out fluent in Spanish! The combination of volunteer work in a vastly different cultural context would be an asset to future employers, and would show your skills of adaptability and ability to work in a different, challenging environment.

  • Living and working in Costa Rica: a challenge?

It may seem daunting to travel to Costa Rica and volunteer by yourself, but don't let that stop you. Our local partner organisation offers professional support, and is the key to your success during your time working in Costa Rica. You'll have constant support throughout the duration of your stay, ensuring that you will thoroughly enjoy the programme and thrive in your new environment.

Aside from the fact that we have the experience required to find you suitable volunteer work, we offer Spanish lessons, accommodation, cultural activities and excursions. All of these aspects combined let you relax and enjoy your time in Costa Rica while being extremely productive!

  • Before leaving

Before taking off, you will receive all of the necessary information concerning your internship/job, and you'll be able to ask any queries/worries you have about travelling abroad.

Destination

Costa Rica is a country known for its long sandy beaches and tropical temperatures. With its combination of nature, culture and adventure, Costa Rica has everything you're looking for. Thousands of tourists from around the globe flock to the country each year to explore the rainforest and breathtaking beaches.

Located in the Caribbean, Costa Rica has an extremely diverse aquatic ecosystem. It's the perfect place for snorkelling, kayaking & fishing.

Our partner school is located in Santa Barbara, a semi-rural area just outside of San José (the capital) in the Heredia area. The city offers all the local amenities you'll need for daily life: internet cafes, banks and supermarkets.

The language school is located 45 minutes away from downtown San José and Heredia University is just 20 km away. You'll find restaurants, shopping centres, cinemas and nightclubs in the area, making it easy to relax and have a wander after classes.

Volunteer

Programme

Our partner school works with various local associations that you are able to volunteer with (ages 18+).

Most volunteer programmes require participants to stay for either 4 weeks (1 week Spanish course & 3 weeks of volunteering) or 8 weeks (4 week Spanish course & 4 weeks of volunteering), but the duration varies depending on the programme.

You take the Spanish course first, and then move on to the voluntary work with a project of your choosing. You may have to change accommodation for certain projects, as the associations are located in various areas of Costa Rica.

The school is generally very flexible, so if you have a specific project in mind or a particular time frame in which to do it, please do not hesitate to contact us to discuss your potential project.

Organisations

Volunteers are able work in various different fields and different types of local associations.
Here are a few examples of the work available to you during your stay:

  • Health: work in clinics, hospices, hospitals, nursing homes or participating in prevention campaigns
  • Youth: work in holiday centres, schools, community centres (such as soup kitchens)
  • Local people: helping employees in community centres (advanced level of Spanish), helping to promote equality and opportunity between the sexes (advanced level of Spanish)
  • Teaching: Teaching English either in a primary school, to teenagers or to adults
  • Ecology/environment: work in parks, animal shelters, in eco-communities with turtles or in local zoos

Some placements are more challenging than others and demand more work from the volunteer. For this reason, the rates differ depending on the field of expertise.

Standard programmes: Education, Children, Health, Community

Minimum language level required: B1

Special programmes: Ecology, Environment, Animals, National Parks

Minimum language level required: A2

If your language skills aren't quite there yet, you will be redirected towards a programme more suited to your capabilities, or you'll have the chance to combine your volunteering with extra Spanish classes (on top of those already reserved for you as part of the programme).

Accommodation

You will stay with a host family for the duration of your Spanish course, and then you will move to Volunteers' house while you are carrying out your volunteer work.

  • Host family

    • Single room
    • Shared bathroom (private bathroom for an extra charge)
    • Full board (3 meals a day) from Monday - Saturday
    • Laundry: Once a week
  • Volunteers' house (Ranger House)

    • Shared room
    • Shared bathroom
    • Laundry: Once a week

Prices & Dates 2019

Dates 2019

The volunteer programmes are in general available year round, subject to certain conditions (some projects with animals are only available at certain times of year for example).

Prices 2019

Booking prices -

Includes all taxes and enrolment fees, programme, course and accommodation as described

Apply
Course, volunteering & accommodation in a host family (course) then residence (volunteering)
DurationStandardSpecial
1 + 3 weeks$1,370$1,720
4 + 4 weeks$2,245$2,510
Optional extras (per week)
Extension of your stayStandardSpecial
Week of lessons with homestay accommodation$375$450
Week of volunteering with homestay accommodation$210$280

Prices include:

  • Placement fee and guidance
  • Transfer on arrival from San José airport
  • Programme as described
  • Accommodation & board as described
  • Placement test
  • Certificate of participation
  • All taxes and enrolment fees
  • Assistance in obtaining a visa (if necessary)

Prices do not include:

  • Travel to/from Costa Rica
  • Optional insurance
  • Visa fees (if applicable)

Practical info

Transport

  • Arrival Airport: San José (SJO)
  • Transfer from the airport to the accommodation is included

We can organise your flights if you would like us to. This can be specified on the registration form.

Visa information

Do you need a Visa for this programme? For more information, please consult our page Visa Information.

Do not hesitate to contact us by telephone or email if you would like any further information.

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