Orosi Valley Paradise Experience
Costa Rica is a cultural and natural paradise, but most travelers only see it from a traditional tourist perspective, missing much of the key beauty and challenges that are its reality. Globe Aware's Costa Rica volunteer travel programs offer a unique opportunity to help small communities improve their well-being and create a sustainable future in ecologically important areas.
Volunteer Work Projects in Orosi Valley
About an hour from the city of San Jose, in a gorgeous, hidden valley (Orosi), rests the tiny community of El Yaz, known for its clean water, rich soil, eternal spring-like temperatures (about 75 degrees every day) and organic, agricultural way of life. Although the villagers love their natural paradise, they have struggled to make ends meet, as even low paying jobs are rare. Most villagers may not live in abject poverty, but have no access to hot water, cars, or many of the amenities to which a North American may be accustomed.
Globe Aware is building a multi-use center which, in addition to providing refuge for those affected by earthquakes and natural disasters, etc, will be where many locals receive sustainable job skills. The government has agreed to provide ongoing maintenance costs and instructors for training locals in plumbing, farming, construction, sewing, and many other self-sustaining technical job skills when the building is complete.
As side projects to the heavy manual labor of construction, volunteers will work in a variety of community development projects such as:
- English teaching at public schools
- Maintenance to Community Facilities
- Maintenance and upgrades to local families homes’
- Arts and crafts / activities or fitting reading glasses for elderly people group
- Chicken coop construction for local families
Projects will vary depending on the number of volunteers, which projects were finished with the prior group, what priorities have changed, weather conditions, which supplies are available, and often the interest and fitness level of the volunteers. For these reasons, specific projects are often not fixed until the week prior to your arrival and can even change upon arrival.
Some Completed Orosi Valley Volunteer Work Projects:
- Promote requested perma-culture gardening to locals through demonstrations
- Organize butterfly garden
- Repair pedestrian bridges
- Provide environmental education and conservation
- Solar cooking projects
- Bury and installed new PVC water pipe to bring new clean water source into community
- Paint school and build fence around it
- Plant trees
- Build book shelves for school
- Make and install road signs to community
- Paint communal hall
- Build recycling stations
- Build waste receptacles
- Paint and install identifying signs in rain forest
Meet some of Globe Aware's service vacation volunteer coordinators - click here..
Volunteer Holiday Food and Lodging
Volunteer vacationers in this paradise location stay in one of two side by side mountain top houses. Built in traditional Costa Rican style, furnished with fans & comfortable beds. These include Western-style bathrooms and showers, and hot water. On the 9 acre property are many fruit trees, spectacular views, hiking paths, many tropical birds, a covered Gazebo social area, basketball court, and hammocks. Volunteers are fed plenty of fresh, healthy, abundant, Costa Rican dishes, heavy with fresh fruits, vegetables, rice and beans, with some chicken, egg and beef dishes. Electricity is available, though on a more limited basis than you may be used to at home. Laundry facilities are available on site.
Possible Leisure Activities During Your Service Vacation
- Excursion to Irazu Volcano or Tapanti Rainforrest, Cachi Dam Lake
- Nature hikes
- Bathe in the many nearby natural hot springs
- Cheese making
- Traditional sugar cane processing
- Incredible star gazing
- Coffee tasting, coffee plantation tour
- Challote farm
- Relaxing in a hammock
- Visit one of the last remaining colonial towns, Orosi, and its famous church
- Guayabo, the nation’s most famous archeological site
Arranging Your Volunteer Vacation Airfare
You will need to arrange to be at the meet-up point in San Jose by 2:30 pm on the Sunday your program begins. The program ends the following Saturday morning and it takes approximately 1.5 hours to return to San Jose. The airport is one of the return drop-off stops our driver will make.
For return flight home, unless you are staying to tour independently a few days afterward, book your return flight for 7:00 am or later on the Saturday the program ends. It is not unusual for volunteers to make the airport transfer starting at 4am for a 7am flight (the trip takes only one hour at this time of day.)