Review Volunteer Devon Coulter Costa Rica Sea Turtle Conservation Program
1- How was the local ABV Coordinator and the support provided in-country?
Very good. The staff on-site was incredibly friendly and helpful. I always felt very welcome.
2- What was the most surprising thing you experienced?
I was surprised by how many turtles I actually saw and how much I was able to do. Because I stayed for so long I was able to become a patrol leader and exhumations giving me an even better opportunity to world hands-on with the turtles, from eggs to hatchlings to mothers.
3- What was most difficult to experience?
The food was my only problem. Rice and beans 3 meals a day 5 days a week become very unappetizing. However, there is a very good supermarket a short walk into the town with bread, pepsi, and many other snacks.
4- Any tips for future volunteers… (Clothing, travel, personal items, donations)
It says bring warm clothes because it gets chilly at night, but only once did I wear a pair of sweatpants, so unless you are a very cold person, save the space in luggage by leaving the thick, heavy, clothing behind.
5.1-Other things volunteers should know:
- There are lots of things to do when not working, some of them completely free, like hiking
- The nearby waterfall, visiting the natural ocean pools, watching the monkeys that visit the house, etc.
- Bring lots of snacks. Eat them and the space they took up the way will be free for souvenirs on the way back.
6- Personal Paragraph (ABV Program Testimonial):
I had an absolutely fantastic time on this trip. The staff was incredibly friendly. The turtles were amazing. All of the volunteers got along so well.
7- How would you describe your accommodation, meals, security (e: host family, on-site, shared)
The accommodations were a dorm type setting with a kitchen and dining room and a very relaxing porch with several hammocks, and an ocean view. The food was mostly rice and beans occasionally pancake for breakfast or pasta or dinner. I felt very safe.
8- What was your favorite memory of this trip?
Every time on a patrol when I would see turtle tracks my heart would skip a beat. It was so incredible to watch them dig the nest, lay the eggs, and return to sea. Such beautiful creatures.
9- How was the ABV USA support prior traveling?
Very good. The packing list and all the details about arrival were very helpful.
10 – Are you willing to speak to other potential ABV volunteers?