Volunteer in Costa Rica

Volunteer in Costa Rica

Volunteer in Costa Rica with A Broader View Volunteers, our highly rated non-profit charity organization. Volunteer placements are located throughout Costa Rica, mainly in the cities of San Jose and Escazu as well as on the Pacific and Atlantic coastal regions. Volunteers can choose between 19 programs options throughout in Costa Rica.

With housing available up to 30 volunteers, A Broader View has hosted hundreds of university student groups, peace corp alternative teens and family volunteer programs in our Costa Rica turtle programs. If you have a group of 5 or more interested in volunteering together, customized programs can be arranged. A Broader View Volunteers has extensive experience working with students, teachers and families providing tailor-made service trips for small groups

Volunteer in Costa Rica, the Spanish optimistically called the country "Rich Coast." Mention Costa Rica and people think paradise. Costa Rica, despite being such a tiny nation, draws well over a million visitors every year - and you can see why.  With its year round mild climate, relaxed visa requirements for travelers, and friendly locals Costa Rica is an ideal place to volunteer.

Our volunteer projects located in San Jose/Escazu include orphanage support, teaching project, supporting the elderly and healthcare work.  The Sea Turtle projects are based up and down the Pacific and Caribbean Coast line.

Sea Turtle Volunteers must arrive to San Jose in the morning or early afternoon. Night flights will delay the start of your program by one day due to travel time to the project site.

17 years and over. With parents if under

18 years and over.
W/ parents if under

24/7 local staff in country

24/7 local staff
in country

Tax deductible and fundraising options

Tax deductible and
fundraising options

Accommodations safe & friendliness

Accommodations safe & friendliness

Spanish Lessons available if needed

Spanish Lessons
available if needed

Work Schedule 4-8 hours a day

Work Schedule
4-8 hours a day

Airport Transfers included abroad

Airport Transfers
included abroad

Programs start at any day

Programs start
at any day

Language Requirements

No Language
Requirements

Available for Special Groups

Available for Special Groups


Overview

  • Project length: From 1 week to 6 weeks
  • Arrival Airport: San Jose (SJO)
  • Work Schedule: 6-8 hours per day. 5-6 days a week
  • Requirements: No Spanish needed, independent bus ride to/from project site.
  • Age Limits: Minimum 18yrs or older for solo travelers.
  • Minimum Age: 12 to 17 yrs if traveling with parents. Families welcome all ages.
  • Airlines: American, United, Delta, US Airways, Copa, Taca, Avianca, Spirit Airways
  • Vaccinations: Routine Vac, Hep-A and Typhoid wwwnc.cdc.gov/

Volunteer Opportunities in Escazu

Teaching Program

Teaching Program

Volunteer Costa Rica As a teaching volunteer in Costa Rica you will significantly contribute to the welfare of the education system and get a new perspective of life in Costa Rica.

Volunteers are needed and welcome in a local pre-school which has 65 students, mainly from underprivileged families. Volunteers act as teaching assistants and main role will be assisting a local teacher with all aspects of English lessons. You may act as a tutor and provide individualized attention to students in need. Volunteers are can get involved in teaching extra-curricular activities such as art, dance, drama, and music or after school sports games to interact with the children.

Whatever experience or interests, teaching volunteers make important contributions by improving students' English skills as well as their understanding of other subjects.  Join us today and see a broader view of the world!

Sloth Conservation

Sloth Conservation

Volunteer in Costa Rica’s Pacific area which is home to a wide array of wildlife including sloths, monkeys, turtles, iguana and other marsupials. Join us today and be part of a community led mammal monitoring and conservation project.

Sloth Conservation

Animals are often illegally hunted for food or income. Some are killed by urban and agricultural expansion.Expansion of local towns and developments have also directly reduced the populations of many species. The local population often lacks knowledge about the importance of these species, as well as how to mitigate risks to them and the entire surrounding forest system.

Sloth behavior remains particularly elusive especially with regards to how they fare after rescue centers release them into the wild. Research on them, anteaters, raccoons, other mammals and more about sea turtle nesting behavior is needed in the area.

Environmental education activities provide local youth opportunities to participate in conservation. It also gives them the opportunity to learn English which can be help them pursue careers in ecotourism. Volunteers are involved in night walks and helping with the turtle hatchery. The Monitoring Center provides a unique way for locals and international volunteers to get involved in the conservational efforts in this province.

Objectives and volunteer role

  • Initiate research the populations and behavior of local mammals (including sloths, monkeys, raccoons and anteaters)
  • Participate in activities related to turtle nesting and hatching, including night walks and egg rescues
  • Raise public awareness on wildlife care for greater society to understand their role and the value of conservation of wild species.
  • Link professionals from different sectors in the development of the center, such as biology, social areas and communication, economics, architecture and engineering areas.
  • Provide support for volunteers through a leadership role in the conservation of sea turtles
  • Engage local community through providing informative programs and volunteer opportunities
  • Coordinate and conduct conservational education programs at the local secondary school

DURING YOUR FREE TIME: Volunteers are free to visit and see places or do shopping during their free time. Explore local markets or travel to the beaches which can be visited on the weekends. The country offers unparalleled natural beauty, active volcanoes, rainforests, and a wide range of national parks and eco-tourism. In addition, optional Spanish lessons or dance classes can be arranged locally.

Special Needs Center

Special Needs Center

Volunteer Costa Rica This program is ideal for compassionate volunteers who want to help teens and adults who have a range of physical and intelectual disabilities.  

This Center is a meeting place where special needs community members, and their families can come and socialize with each other.  The center is open Monday to Friday from 8:00AM -  2:00PM and as different activities such as jewelry making, music therapy, art and drawing lessons, sports, popular dance and handicrafts.

Volunteers contribute by helping with physical therapy, interaction with the staff, creating activites, and socializing with patients and their families. This program can be easily combined with language immersion lessons.

Pre-Medical Program

Pre-Medical Program

Volunteers Costa Rica are needed and welcome at this transitional shelter for children with chronic illness. The care center can accommodate 25 children, most of whom suffer from burns, healing from a transplant, awaiting surgery or are being treated for chronic disease. Patients from the National Children’s hospital are referred here to avoid prolonged hospitalization, and also provide housing for those coming from rural areas.

The place has large green areas and provides a serene environment for sick children.  Each family is provided support through nursing, nutritionists, psychological, pharmacy according to the clinical picture of the child. This help includes food, clothing, literacy, recreation, training and emotional support to the patients and their families.

Pre-medical volunteers have the opportunity to assist the nursing staff with non-evasive procedures, shadow during examinations, and learn about treating long term chronic illnesses in children. Your role will vary providing care, feeding, interaction with the children, as well collaborating with the staff and teachers on their daily activities. This can be a challenging program but all help is needed.

If you are a pre-medical, pre-nursing or public health major seriously considering a health career, this is a perfect project to gain first hand knowledge of medical standards in developing communities in Costa Rica. This program can be combined with language immersion lessons.

Immersion Spanish

Meaningful travel begins when you engage with people of the world. If you are considering a volunteer program in Costa Rica and want to improve your Spanish, our language immersion volunteer program is a perfect fit.  In this program you will enhance your Spanish, grow as an individual and discover more about the local Tica culture.  You will have daily lessons with a native Spanish speaker, living with a local Costa Rican family and participating in a locally-run community program. Through this program you will discover life as a global citizen and (hopefully) gain a broader view of the world.

Language immersion volunteer program in Escazu includes 8 hours of weekly Spanish lesson 4 afternoons per week. Volunteers will be given a placement test to determine their Spanish level.  Lessons will be personalized to focus on proper pronunciation, grammar and conversation. This language immersion option can be combined with any of our Escazu volunteer projects.  

Senior Care Center

Senior Care Center

As in most societies around the world, caring for the elderly is left to social welfare institutions when their own families cannot care for them. Many of the elderly care centers support those with disabilities, those who have been abandoned or have mental illness such as Alzheimer’s.

Volunteer work varies from day to day but focuses on personal interactions and stimulation with the residents, feeding, therapy needs, as well as light maintenance jobs like sweeping, cleaning. 

The ages of the residents range between 67 – 111 years old! The home seeks to distribute food, clothing and medicine to those in need whilst trying to keep an adequate standard of living for the elderly. It is necessary for staff to keep fully updated in regards to all safety conditions applicable to the elderly residents as there are a wide range of health conditions and each individual may have different requirements.

The ways in which you can help like volunteer are:

  • Meals times – most residents will need to be hand-fed.
  • Specialized therapeutic care. Occupational therapy.
  • Recreation and culture needs: Spiritual growth. Reading books, talking together
  • Nursing care available 24/7.

Animal Rescue Shelter

Animal Rescue Shelter

Volunteer Costa Rica at an animal refuge shelter outside of Escazu which has a variety of rescheduled animals, reptiles, amphibians, mammals and birds.  Volunteer tasks vary from administration and cleaning to feeding of the animals, enclosure maintenance, working one on one with the animals and other tasks as needed.

Our volunteer’s role includes welcoming visitors, help to clean cages and feed animals, as well as help to answer visitor’s questions about the shelter and the environmental education information about the resident animals. Volunteers will help the field assistants and local veterinarian in caring for injured wildlife, and providing health checks to the local animal residents.  

If animal protection is your passion and you want to potentially see some of the most remote corners of the globe then wildlife volunteering is for you. Volunteers with interest in veterinarian careers, or those with veterinarian training are welcome!

  • Volunteer requirements: closed toed shoes, long pants (no shorts)

Day Care Center

Day Care Center

For most working families in Costa Rica having access to a local a day care center is essential.  The center provides a safe haven for their young children as the parents go to work each day.  This center provided care for over 100 children between the ages of 2 to 6 years old. The center provides play based curriculum focusing on social, emotional and physical development of each children through interaction with their teacher and peers.

Volunteers often also assist the local staff with tasks such as washing dishes and cleaning, which are essential to the daily running of the care centers.  The main things our volunteer offer is a source of support, friendship and interaction with the staff and children at the center.  Any skills you have to offer are welcome, and hugely benefit the center and local staff. This program can be combined with a language immersion course.

General Tasks: feeding and washing up, teaching numbers and letters in English, playing games and doing arts and craft projects with the children.  You may also help in the kitchen areas, and with light cleaning jobs at the program.

Pre Dental

Pre Dental

For many people in Costa Rica basic dental health needs are unaffordable. Local people rely on public clinics (not private expensive care) for their dental needs.  As you can imagine the number of patients can outweigh the means of the local dental staff. Our volunteers, those interested or currently enrolled in dental school, are welcome to volunteer in one of these public clinics. Not only is this is great hands on learning experience, you will be helping the local dental staff with their overworked schedules.

General Tasks & Main Responsibilities:

  • Shadow the doctor on his/her daily work.
  • Help in the cleaning of the clinic.
  • Help cleaning and organizing the instruments.
  • Help the doctor/secretary with the appointments.
  • Depending on volunteer’s training, assisting the doctor when he/she is with the patients.

Volunteer Opportunities in San Jose

Orphanage Care

Orphanage Care

Volunteer in Costa Rica at a local orphanage in a suburb of San Jose (Guadalupe). This residential facility is home to about 25 children who range in age between toddlers to pre-teens (2yrs-12yrs old). The “Tias” or caretakers at the orphanage need help with everyday tasks for the children. 

Volunteer Activities May Include:

  • Helping children learn conversational English
  • Teaching basics like colors, numbers, letters and basic math.
  • Preparing, serving and helping to feed the younger children
  • Create arts and crafts, songs, sports activities with the kids.

Volunteers should be flexible, caring, be a self-starter and have strong Spanish skills.  Volunteers are asked to wear long pants and closed toe shoes at the orphanage. Language Immersion lessons can be combined with this volunteer project.

Important: Arrival flights must be before 10pm (no exceptions) to San Jose and departure flight should be after 1pm.

Day Care Support

Day Care Support

The program provides services for children and adolescents who have little access to social services, and come from poor families living in and around San Jose. Very much like a community day care, or boys and girls center in the USA, this is a safe haven for many families. Children are provided a place to come and get basic education, some food, recreational activities and love and attention from the caring staff.

Volunteers should be flexible, caring, be a self-starter and have strong Spanish skills. Volunteers are asked to wear long pants and closed toe shoes at the orphanage. Language Immersion lessons can be combined with this volunteer project.

Important: Arrival flights must be before 10pm (no exceptions) to San Jose and departure flight should be after 1pm.

Museum Volunteer

Museum Volunteer

The Children’s Museum of Costa Rica is a first of it's kind in Central America. Created to help children and their families enjoy, understand and become active citizens of the world in which they live.  The Museum encourages imagination, curiosity, investigation, innovation, and play. Set in the old military prison, just north of downtown San Jose, this is a wonderful education institution that is a pacesetter for children's programs and exhibits.

Volunteers work side by side the local staff to encourage hands-on play and allow children to learn and experience science, music, geography and other subjects.  Volunteers will work with the visitors and help to explain the exhibits, also can help with setting up displays, assisting with guided tours. Work hours are approximately 830am-13:00pm, 13:30pm-15:00pm Monday through Thursday.

Important: Arrival flights must be before 10pm (no exceptions) to San Jose and departure flight should be after 1pm.

Pre-Medical/Pre-Nursing

Pre-Medical/Pre-Nursing

If you are an undergraduate studying biology, chemistry or any of the sciences and are considering a career in medicine this is the ideal program for you.  You will have an opportunity to see what life as a healthcare professional will be like. Having this experience is a great way to strengthen your application to medical/nursing/PA school.

Volunteer at a children’s hospital in San Jose. Some of the activities in which the volunteer will be involved are:

  • Feed the babies
  • Help with language therapy
  • Go on rounds and support doctors with non-evasive tasks
  • Teach the kids math or science or other subjects
  • Take part in any special project assigned by the doctors

Requirement: loose fitting clothing or scrubs, flat closed toed shoes or sneakers/trainers, no jewelry/earring/rings, no perfume or strong deodorant, hair must be tied up, no photograph in the hospital.  If you are sick you should not report to work that day.  These requirements are mandatory for the safety and well being of the patients.

This project can be combined with the Spanish Language Immersion option

ONLY Monday or Tuesday arrival: flight must arrive before 8pm (no exceptions) to San Jose. The clinic orientation is on Wednesday.

Special Needs Teaching

Special Needs Teaching

Volunteer in Costa Rica This is a challenging but rewarding special needs school project that caters to children with development delays as well as vision and hearing impairments.  There are several students who are deaf, and sign language is commonly used to help communicate with the children.  Some of the children live with autism, Down’s syndrome and are being provided speech therapy.

The children are separated into small departments, classes of 5-6 students per group, and focus on hearing impaired, visually impaired and also mentally impaired children. The school is supporting over 200 per year with the majority of work with kids 4 years - 12 years old. Volunteers are needed to help with this personal interaction with the children. Volunteers can also work with speech therapy, language and physical therapy.

  • This project can be combined with the Spanish Language Immersion option.
  • School semesters from March-June, and then August through end of November.

Important: Arrival flights must be before 10pm (no exceptions) to San Jose and departure flight should be after 1pm.

Language Immersion

Meaningful travel begins when you engage with people of the world. Our language immersion volunteer programs in San Jose allow you to learn Spanish, grow as an individual and discover a new culture. What better way to learn a language than full immersion: lessons with a native Spanish speaker, home-stay with a local Costa Rican family and participating in a locally-run service project and community activities. Return from your ABV travels with a greater appreciation of your surroundings. Learn to be a global citizen and gain a broader view of the world.

Language immersion volunteer program includes 7 hours of weekly Spanish lessons, with three afternoons of classroom instruction. You will be given a placement test when you arrive to determine your Spanish level. Lessons will focus on pronunciation, grammar and conversation. The language immersion volunteer program can be combined with our orphanage care, day care, pre-medical/nursing and medical projects.

Important: Arrival flights must be before 10pm (no exceptions) to San Jose and departure flight should be after 1pm.

Elderly Care Center

Elderly Care Center

The Elder Center home receives some government funding, but they operate on a tight budget and are in constant need of extra assistance and donations. The residents at the home are age sixty-five and up, and come from all walks of life. In traditional Costa Rican culture, their families care for senior citizens. Economic and social changes have made this tradition difficult to carry on, and elders in Costa Rica now often live in assisted-living facilities, many of which are understaffed and short on resources. 

Responsibilities vary, and some tasks depend upon the volunteer’s knowledge and experience of healthcare and working with the elderly. Common tasks range anywhere from playing games, sharing stories, and practicing english with the senior citizens, to assisting nursing staff with distributing medicine, seeing to the needs of the residents, and helping with the day-to-day maintenance of the facility. By assisting with these projects, participants can make a difference to the elderly of Costa Rica and to the staff who work with them, while forming a lasting connection to the local community.

Important: Arrival flights must be before 10pm (no exceptions) to San Jose and departure flight should be after 1pm. Night flights will delay the start of your program by one day.

Volunteer Opportunities in Sea Turtle Conservation

Sea Turtles Pacific

Sea Turtles Pacific

The projects range from very secluded locations that require 4/4 vehicles and boats to access the program area to those closer to towns.  Volunteers participate on the sea turtle preservation including monitoring and registering nesting patterns, record keeping of eggs, moving eggs to the hatchery, beach patrols, freeing of the newborns to the ocean. Experience not required, but anticipate strange work hours (middle of the night!) and lots of time spent on the beach.  * Most births occur between July and November.

Our projects are open to individuals as well as groups.  We know that volunteers play a vital role in the conservation efforts: without outside assistance, these projects would be lost. Join them and make a difference!

  • Volunteers must arrive to San Jose in the morning or Noon flights, night flights will delay the start of your program by one day.

Important: Arrival flights must be before 10pm (no exceptions) to San Jose and departure flight should be after 1pm. And arrivals/departures must only Mondays to Thursdays, NOT Friday, Saturday or Sunday.

Sea Turtle Internship

Sea Turtle Internship



Internship descriptions: With the collaboration of volunteers through internship projects we get the chance to continually improve the development of the investigation projects, pursuing conservation of resources in areas of biological importance in the Central American tropics.  We need people who want to have a rewarding experience doing an internship or a gap year project on behalf of the natural resources of Costa Rica and the world. It is also a great opportunity to learn about the culture, language, food and hospitality of Costa Rica in the Latin American context.


Important: Arrival flights must be before 10pm (no exceptions) to San Jose and departure flight should be after 1pm. And arrivals/departures only Mondays to Thursdays, Not Saturday or Sunday.

Mission: Through the Beach Investigation Program, we protect and conserve the nests and carry on a program of investigation which allows us to develop information leading to proper planning of tourist activities and to the efficient conservation and protection of the endangered species.



Participation objective


Apply knowledge in areas of natural sciences in terms of improving and supporting research activities in marine resource conservation in Costa Rica, fulfilling personal and professional academic requirements related to biodiversity conservation.



Duties of the intern

  • Assist other volunteers in the roles assigned within the project
  • Introduction to the methodology and data collection practices along with the basic biology of sea turtles
  • Attend and participate in data collection on the beaches related to the tasks of monitoring species
  • Attend the placement activities, harvesting, replanting, removal, monitoring and surveillance of nests according to preset protocols for sea turtle monitoring
  • Assist in the release of baby turtles according to protocol
  • Perform exhumations in the company of volunteer support
  • Record and review the information to be recorded in the formats established by the protocol
  • In addition, the intern will have to be responsible for the use and maintenance of tools, equipment and facilities of the project and other activities necessary for the normal performance of the project, considering the comments, recommendations and schedules of the volunteer coordinators in the project.

Important: Arrival flights must be before 10pm (no exceptions) to San Jose and departure flight should be after 1pm. And arrivals/departures only Mondays to Fridays, Not Saturday or Sunday.

Sea Turtles Caribbean

Sea Turtles Caribbean

This park is the most important area in the entire west half of the Caribbean for the nesting of the green turtle. Volunteers participate on the sea turtle preservation including monitoring and registering nesting patterns, record keeping of eggs, moving eggs to the hatchery, beach patrols, freeing of the newborns to the ocean. Experience not required, but anticipate strange work hours (middle of the night!) and lots of time spent on the beach.

Our projects are open to individuals as well as groups.  We know that volunteers play a vital role in the conservation efforts: without outside assistance, these projects would be lost. Join them and make a difference!

  • Volunteers must arrive to San Jose in the morning or Noon flights, night flights will delay the start of your program by one day.

Important: Arrival flights must be before 10pm (no exceptions) to San Jose and departure flight should be after 1pm. And arrivals/departures only Mondays to Thursdays, Not Saturday or Sunday.

Country Info

Costa Rica Introduction

Are you ready to help people in need, immerse yourself in the sights, sounds and culture of a new country and have the experience of a lifetime? With poverty, disease and a lack of skilled providers putting a strain on important services such as health and childcare in developing countries across the globe, there are many corners of the world which rely on the help of volunteer travelers like yourself.

Volunteer in Costa Rica with A Broader View Volunteers a top rated non-profit charity organization, which works tirelessly to support our wonderful volunteers and serve the local communities where our volunteer programs are located. Placements in Costa Rica are based in the  cities of San Jose, Escazu, Pacific & Caribbean areas..  Program placements are tailored to the volunteers different interests and skill sets, but still allow volunteers time to explore the Central America local culture and activities during their free time.

The type of programs in Costa Rica vary widely, offering everything from education to health care. Volunteers can choose between 19 program opportunities in San Jose, Escazu, Pacific & Caribbean areas. International volunteer help is not only appreciated by the local community, it is severely needed by the millions of Costa Ricans living below the poverty line.  With thousands of children living and working on the streets, as is so often the case in developing countries like Costa Rica, our volunteer programs are designed to support the needs of local teens and children in desperate need of assistance.

Many of our volunteer abroad programs cater to underprivileged women and children’s care, education and health requirements. Our extensive range of social programs in San Jose, Escazu, Pacific & Caribbean areas, Costa Rica programs include: Pre Medical, Pre nurses, Pre Dental, sea turtles, sloth/monkey sanctuary, Elderly care, woman support, internships, teaching in primary and secondary schools and volunteering in orphanages and day care centers and many more programs. To help you settle into your placement, we also provide the opportunity to combine all of our programs with Spanish Immersion Lessons during your time in Costa Rica.

Volunteering in Costa Rica is an incredibly rewarding experience.  We welcome volunteers of all ages and from all backgrounds to join us. Whether you’re seeking volunteer abroad programs for college students or voluntary work for over 60s, as a trusted non-profit organization which prioritizes the safety of our volunteers, we are the go-to for volunteers across the globe. We also offer customized programs with flexible arrival dates to best suit the needs of the remarkable volunteers we depend on to help us make the world a better place.

If you’d like to volunteer, Costa Rica is just one of the countries we’ve taken under our wing, supplying a steady flow of volunteers and providing year-round financial support to local projects in San Jose, Escazu, Pacific & Caribbean areas. Wherever you decide to volunteer, A Broader View give you the opportunity to participate in meaningful community service work, learn a foreign language, make lifelong friends and discover that one person really can make a difference. Your search for the best volunteer abroad programs ends here – volunteer in Costa Rica with us and gain A Broader View of the world.

Coordinator

Alexander Coordinator Costa Rica

Welcome to Costa Rica (Bienvenido (a) a Costa Rica 🇨🇷 ). Our names are Jenny, Alexander and Jesus and are your ABV coordinators while you are staying in Costa Rica. Our country has one big city, San Jose. But you will be working in Escazu, San Jose, Pacific ir Caribbean area. We will be ready for support 24/7 in case you need to contact me urgently. We will introduce you to your volunteer location and staff.

You are most welcome to seek my assistance and don’t hesitate to ask me questions while in country.

Weather

Because Costa Rica is located between nine to ten degrees north of the Equator, the climate is tropical year round. However, the country has many micro-climates depending on elevation, rainfall, topography, and by the geography of each particular region.

What's the best time to go to San José in Costa Rica? Here are some annual weather facts we collected from our historical climate data:

  • On average, the temperatures are always high.
  • A lot of rain (rainy season) falls in the months of: May, June, July, August, September, October and November.
  • San José has dry periods in January, February and March.
  • On average, the warmest month is March.
  • On average, the coolest month is September.
  • September is the wettest month. This month should be avoided if you don't like too much rain.
  • January is the driest month.

Weather Costa Rica

City: San Jose | Population: 4.805 million | Languages: Spanish
Currency: Costa Rican Colón (CRC) | Time zone: UTC−06:00

Reviews & Multimedia

Reviews

I had a fantastic experience all the way around with ABV. From the time I inquired about their programs, to almost the day before I left to come to Costa Rica, ABV was continually in touch with me making sure everything was arranged, taken care of, answered any questions I had.

ABV Volunteer - Marla


Nationality: USA

Age: 64

I was lucky enough to volunteer at a hospital where I would help care for the babies or kids whose parents could not always be with them. There are not enough nurses to care for all of the kids and the parents need to eat or sleep at some point and that is where the rest of the volunteers.

ABV Volunteer - Veronica


Nationality: USA

Age: 21

Volunteer Costa Rica: From beginning to end though, you are taken care of. Someone picks you up from the airport, our host was always there for us and very helpful, and we were only ever on our own on the weekends when we decided to do excursions, which was our own choice.

ABV Volunteer - Katherine


Nationality: USA

Age: 22

Prices for Costa Rica

Program Fees

Since A Broader View Volunteers is a 501c(3) charitable organization, You can fundraise (optional) for the expenses of the trip after you get confirmed in our programs. Prices are per person and in US dollars (US$).

Length of programProgram Fee $USD
1 week $910
2 weeks $1025
3 weeks $1240
4 weeks $1355
5 weeks $1470
6 weeks $1580

Special Programs

Country / weeks1234
Costa Rica - Language Immersion $1070 $1375 $1685 $1995
Country / weeks681012
Costa Rica - Sea Turtle (internship) - - - $3499
Country / weeks23456
Costa Rica (Sea Turtles Pacific-Caribbean) $1300 $1490 $1720 $1950 $2170
Country / weeks123456
Costa Rica - Sloth/Mammals Conservation $975 $1185 $1395 $1605 $1815 $2025

Inclusions

  • Accommodation: Host family (Sea Turtle / Sloth projects are cabana style dorms)
  • Meals: Breakfast, lunch and dinner daily
  • Arrival: Airport (SJO) meet and greet by ABV Staff
  • Orientation: Project Overview and San Jose Orientation
  • Support: Pre-trip written guide, In-country ABV staff available 24/7
  • Departure: ABV Staff Escorted Airport Transfer

Extra costs: Flights to Costa Rica. Entry Visa (if applicable). Departure taxes. Vaccinations. Local Transportation. Travel & Health Insurance (approx. us$53). Laundry and Internet (us$10 and us$15).

Meals & Food

Volunteers are provided breakfast, lunch and dinner at their accommodation 7 days a week  (each specific program will have a description otherwise if it has a different plan for meals). Breakfast typically consists of toast, fruit, eggs, rice and beans accompanied with tea or coffee. Dinner usually includes: meat (cow, chicken), potato, rice, vegetables and Gallo Pinto, is the national dish of Costa Rica consisting of rice and beans. Gallo Pinto is served with almost every meal. Lunches are provided in San Jose, Escazu and sea turtle programs, volunteers are usually away from their accommodation mid-day. We recommend budgeting between US$5 and US$10 per day to purchase lunch if you don't return to the host family, let them know you have other plans. Sea Turtle Conservation volunteers are provided with lunch given the rural settings of these projects. If you have specific dietary requirements, our local teams and home-stays can customize to you but be flexible as well.

Start Dates

Most of our programs run year round, you can start any volunteer/internship program on any day. When you apply you will lets know your start and end dates. Our programs run year round and have volunteers arriving almost every day from many different countries.

Since our programs sometimes depend on the local holiday calendar, there are brief occasions when normal programs work is suspended. For example, schools/daycares often close for long winter/summer vacations. During these times, we arrange for alternative work programs that are similar in substance to our ongoing programs, but address the short-term, direct needs of the local communities.

If you would like to arrange your start and end dates around the local holidays, please call us at 1.866.423.3258 or email us at [email protected].

Money Matters

A Broader View Volunteers work tirelessly year round to support our volunteers, and also to serve the local communities where ABV projects are based. As a tax-exempt 501 c(3) organization A Broader View receive 100% of our funding from volunteer contributions. Through your program fee contribution our non-profit charity organization can operate beneficial humanitarian aid programs which are successful and continuous supported year round.

Local, professional full-time coordinators, placement logistics, airport pick up and departure transportation, arrival orientation, food & local accommodations, are a major part of providing a safe, meaningful volunteer experience. When you join A Broader View, you will receive pre-trip visa and vaccination support, assistance with flights, fundraising planning, through our interactive online volunteer portal. Our local partners not only benefit from volunteers valuable contributions at the project, they benefit financially with year-round monetary support from A Broader View. In the last decade A Broader View has donated over 4.5 million dollars in international aid.

By joining A Broader View you are not only helping to make a difference during your own trip, your impact will last even after you go home.

Extras

Tour and weekend trips

Once in country our local coordinator can help you find the most reliable and safe tour agencies for weekend trips, you can pay in cash or in most locations with a credit card. These tours are not part of the ABV fees.

Arenal Volcano and Tabacón Hot Springs Day Trip from San Jose

Find your bliss with a classic Costa Rican experience that combines a seismic dose of adventure and relaxation! On this full-day trip from San Jose, visit the very active Arenal Volcano and explore its base with a guided nature hike. Then, unwind with a soak in a variety of geothermal pools at the luxurious Tabacón hot springs. The tour also includes a stop at the artisan town of Sarchí, plus delicious lunch and dinner.

Manuel Antonio National Park Day Trip from San Jose

Discover one of the most beautiful beaches in Costa Rica on this full-day trip from San Jose to Manuel Antonio National Park. After a scenic drive along the Pacific coast, you’ll arrive at this protected reserve that features lush tropical rain forest and unspoiled stretches of white sandy beach. Relax on the shore or explore the jungle with a guided nature hike, where you’ll have a chance to spot birds, sloths, monkeys and other resident wildlife.

Tortuga Island Day Trip from San Jose

Sail to Tortuga Island aboard a catamaran for on this 12-hour day trip from San Jose. Go swimming and snorkeling, then refuel with a 4-course gourmet lunch. Use of all equipment is included, as is round-trip transportation from your hotel and a hot breakfast before departure.

Sarapiqui River Sightseeing Cruise and Zipline Canopy Tour from San Jose

Delve deep into the Costa Rican rain forest with his full-day tour to Puerto Viejo de Sarapiquí. Take in views of lush tropical landscape and native wildlife during a leisurely riverboat cruise, and then experienced the thrill of swinging through the jungle canopy on a series of treetop ziplines. This action-packed day includes a traditional Costa Rican lunch and round-trip transport from your San Jose hotel.

Whitewater Rafting on the Pacuare River in Costa Rica

Test your paddling skills on this thrilling whitewater rafting trip along Costa Rica’s gorgeous Pacuare River. An experienced guide will help you navigate the Class III and IV rapids that rush through the delightfully lush scenery of the rain forest. No experience is required — just bring your sense of adventure and prepare to get wet on this full-day trip form San Jose! Round-trip hotel transport and a hearty breakfast and lunch are included.

San Jose Dinner, Live Music, and Traditional Dance

Enjoy a festive evening of traditional Costa Rican dance and scrumptious dinner. Admire panoramic views of the Central Valley and the glittering lights of San Jose from a renowned hilltop restaurant. Savor a buffet dinner of authentic Costa Rican cuisine and watch dancers in traditional costume perform to live music. A celebratory fireworks show will cap off an unforgettable night.

Cinco Ceibas Rainforest Reserve and Adventure Park from San Jose

Support sustainable tourism with this eco-adventure to the Cinco Ceibas Rainforest Reserve and Adventure Park. On this full-day trip from San Jose, get an up-close peek at toucans, bats, red-eyed frogs and howler monkeys with a trek across an elevated jungle boardwalk. Create your own adventure with the choice of kayaking down the Rio Cuarto, horseback riding along a river trail or a exploring the reserve in an ox-pulled wagon. A locally sourced lunch, snacks and round-trip transport from San Jose are included.

Festivals and Festivities

January

New Year’s Day—Revelers who were partying in the clubs the night before gather in San José’s Parque Central and Buenos Aires, and Puntarenas to continue the festivities at dances.

“Summer” School Holidays—The long public school vacations in Costa Rica run from the middle of the second week in December through the beginning of the second week in February.  Expect families on vacation and bigger crowds at the beach.  Exact dates can be found on the Ministerio de Educación Pública calendar.

Fiesta Palmares —Traditional (no bloodshed) bullfights, live music, folk dancing, carnival with rides and games take place the first two week of the year in Palmares.  Check their facebook page for the latest schedule and musical guests

Fiesta Santa Cruz—The fiesta in Santa Cruz on the Nicoya peninsula takes place the second week in January and has a western flair with bullfights and a parade followed by a party with food, concerts and fireworks.

Día de Santo Cristo de Esquipulas—Popular religious festival celebrated with fiestas and dancing in Alajuelita, Dulce Nombre and Santa Cruz. Alajuelita also includes an ox-cart parade and procession to the iron cross on the mountain above the village where a blessing is given.

February

Fiesta de los Diablitos—The festival of the little devils takes place in the second half of February. An indigenous celebration wrapped around a re-enactment of a battle between the toro (Spanish troops) and the diablitos (Boruca Indians). Striking hand carved masks and traditional costumes decorate participants and food and fireworks complete the scene in Rey Curre south of San Isidro de El General.

“Summer” School Holidays—The long public school vacations in Costa Rica run from the middle of the second week in December through the beginning of the second week in February.  Expect families on vacation and bigger crowds at the beach.  Exact dates can be found on the Ministerio de Educación Pública calendar.

Nicoya Rodeo & Fiesta Patronal—One of the best on the peninsula or anywhere in Guanacaste.  Rodeo, tope, toro a la Tica (bullfights without the bloodshed), street fairs, traditional food booths, fireworks and music.  Usually the beginning of February but check their facebook page for updates.

Ash Wednesday— Fasting and repentance.

Carnival and Festival del Mar—A week of local celebrations in Puntarenas and Quepos including street fairs and fiestas, dancing, a beauty contest, live music and sporting events.  Check their facebook page for the latest on schedule and who’s appearing at the concerts

Envision—Feb 23 – 26 in 2017 Envision Music, Art and Sacred Movement Festival featuring live concerts, yoga, trapeze and lots of communing on the beach for conscious people from around the globe.

Día de los Boyeros—Oxcart driver’s day takes place on the second Sunday in March. A parade of beautifully handmade and painted oxcarts and driving competitions are surrounded by traditional costumes, food and dancing in San Antonio de Escazú. One of the most colorful celebrations and a real photo opportunity.

Jungle Jam—Jacó Music festival falls on March 10-12 in 2017

Día de San José—Saint Joseph is the patron saint of the capital city San José, and the day is recognized nationwide by Catholics with special masses (especially in the many other towns and communities named San José). It is an official business, bank and school holiday in the capital.

April

Semana Santa—Holy week is observed with religious processions and masses. The official holiday falls on the Thursday and Friday before Easter Sunday.  Public transportation does not run on these two days and is extremely crowded the whole week.  All alcohol sales are prohibited Thurs.- Sun. Many businesses extend the holiday to the entire week.

Fiesta San Vincente de Moravia—Street fair with music, dancing, traditional food and toro a la Tica (bullfights without the bloodshed)

Easter—Family and religious observations

Día de Juan Santamaría—National holiday honoring a young fighter from Alajuela who defended his country to the death against William Walkers forces at the battle of Rivas in 1856.

Parades, marching bands, dances and other celebrations extend through the week concentrated in Alajuela.

Fiesta San Rafael de Sata Ana—Street fair with music, dancing, traditional food and toro a la Tica (bullfights without the bloodshed)

Fiesta Tarrazu—Street fair with music, dancing, traditional food and toro a la Tica (bullfights without the bloodshed)

May

Día de los Trabajadores—Labor Day. Parades, marches and the Presidential “state of the union” address to Congress and the people. Cricket matches are a highlight in Puerto Limón.

Fiesta Pattronale Desamparados—Street fair with music, dancing, traditional food and toro a la Tica (bullfights without the bloodshed)

Día de San Isidro Labrador—Escazú and San Isidros all over Costa Rica hold street fairs and parades with music, dancing, traditional food, honoring the patron saint of farmers with blessings of animals and crops.

Fiestas Pattronales San Marcos de Tarrazu, and Coronado—Street fair with music, dancing, traditional food and toro a la Tica (bullfights without the bloodshed)

June

Fiestas Pattronales Trinidad de Moravia, San Pedro de Montes de Oca, Leon Cortes, and San Jeronimo—Street fair with music, dancing, traditional food and toro a la Tica (bullfights without the bloodshed)

Día de los Padres—Father’s day

Fiesta San Juan de Tibas—Street fair with music, dancing, traditional food and toro a la Tica (bullfights without the bloodshed)

Día de San Pedro y San Pablo—Saint Peter and Saint Paul’s day marked by processions and masses.

July

Fiesta de La Virgen del Mar—The Fiesta of the Virgin of the Sea on the Saturday closest to the 16th is marked in Puntarenas by a procession of decorated fishing boats carrying a statue of La Virgen del Monte Carmelo (the city’s patron saint) and a special mass. The secular celebrations include a week of parades, dances, regattas, parades and fireworks. Playas del Coco also celebrates the Virgin of the Sea.

Día de Guanacaste—Guanacaste Day celebrates the annexation of Guancaste from Nicaragua in 1824. Street fiestas, folk dancing, topes (horse show/parade), traditional bullfights, rodeos and cattle shows are particularly colorful and exuberant in the eponymous northwest region of Guanacaste and the Nicoya peninsula.

Winter School Holiday—The “Winter” break for public schools is Typically the first two weeks in July.  Exact dates can be found on the Ministerio de Educación Pública calendar.

August

Virgen de Los Angeles—National holiday celebrating the patron saint of Costa Rica, La Negrita. Special masses and a religious procession from San José to La Basilica de Cartago. Pilgrims come from all over the country, many on foot to celebrate the mass at Cartago.

Fiesta Ciudad Colon (San Carlos)—Street fair with music, dancing, traditional food and toro a la Tica (bullfights without the bloodshed)

Día de la Madre, Feast of the Assumption—Mother’s day is a national bank, school and business holiday in Costa Rica

Fiesta Pattronale Aserri—Street fair with music, dancing, traditional food and toro a la Tica (bullfights without the bloodshed)

National Parks Day—Special events in the major National Parks around Costa Rica

September

Independence Day—Costa Rica gained independence from Spain on the same day as the rest of Central America in 1821. The nationwide celebration starts with parades, traditional dancers, and street parties and culminates with the arrival of the Freedom Torch in Cartago (delivered from Nicaragua by relay runners) when everyone in the country stops and simultaneously sings the national anthem. Children later enjoy faroles parades where they carry small lanterns through their towns.

October

Fiesta Patronale San Francisco de Dos Ríos—Street fair with music, dancing, traditional food and toro a la Tica (bullfights without the bloodshed)

Founding Day—A week of local celebrations in San Isidro de El General including street fairs and fiestas, dancing and sporting events culminates in the fiesta marking the founding of the town.

Carnival—Shades of Río on the streets of Límon on the Caribbean coast.  This celebration of Columbus’ arrival in the new world culminates on the twelfth (Columbus day).

Fiesta Pattronale Escazú—Street fair with music, dancing, traditional food and toro a la Tica (bullfights without the bloodshed)

Halloween—Relatively new to Costa Rica but gaining popularity rapidly as the youngsters pick up on the concept of trick-or-treat

November

Día de los Muertos—All Soul’s Day is observed across Costa Rica with Catholic masses and pilgrimages to graveyards.

Coffee Picking Contests—Local communities throughout the Meseta Central and mountains sponsor coffee picking contests in November.

El Desfile de Carretas—One of the largest parades of ox-carts (the other is the Día de los Boyeros the second week in March) takes place in San José the last week in November.

December

“Summer” School Holidays—The long public school vacations in Costa Rica run from the middle of the second week in December through the beginning of the second week in February.  Expect families on vacation and bigger crowds at the beach.  Exact dates can be found on the Ministerio de Educación Pública calendar.

Festival de la Luz—San José’s week long festival of lights is marked by lighting displays and concerts and fireworks after dark in the park.

Fiesta Pattronale Pavas—Street fair with music, dancing, traditional food and toro a la Tica (bullfights without the bloodshed)

Immaculate conception, Fiesta de los Negritos—Formerly a national holiday now celebrated with religious processions, masses, and costumed dancing

Fiesta de la Yeguita—Bullfights and a parade followed by a party in the parque central of Nicoya with food, concerts and fireworks.

Misa de Gallo—Christmas eve midnight mass. (Literally, Mass of the Rooster.)

Christmas Week—Although not an official holiday the week preceding Christmas is so commonly observed that it might as well be. A very popular time for Ticos to head to the beach.

Christmas Day—Family gatherings and Christmas mass

Fiesta de Zapote — starting Christmas day Los Festejos Populares de Zapote (eastern San José suburb) with carnival rides, street vendors and corridas de toros a la tica (Costa Rican style bullfights) more info on wikipedia

Tope Caballos—A horse parade on the 26th of December through downtown San José proudly displays the equine traditions and unique Criollo breed.

How may we help you?!

How may we help you?!

Our staff has extensive travel and volunteer abroad experience. We have the answers to all your questions about volunteering with ABV. We can customize any of our programs to your needs and dates.

Call/chat with our team members:

(1) 215 780 1845 [email protected]

Language Immersion:
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