Are you planning on volunteering in Costa Rica? Do you wonder how much it'll cost? Are you looking for the highest rated, cheapest and most trusted companies?
Here's why volunteering in Costa Rica is your best choice for a life-changing adventure….
Costa Rica is one of the most gorgeous destinations for travel. It boasts breathtaking scenery, including white sand beaches and verdant rainforests. You’ll be able to visit stunning beaches on both the Caribbean and the Pacific coasts. The spectacular biodiversity creates a thriving wildlife population with the potential for many fascinating hikes and side trips.
Today, Costa Rica desperately needs volunteers more than ever. The country faces many unique and serious problems, including deforestation due to land being needed for agriculture and crops to feed cattle. As a result, huge problems are created for the many species of animals and birds who make their home in these rapidly decreasing forested areas.
Costa Rica also requires your immediate help due to the rising number of broken families and increased poverty. Tragically, the number of orphanages are also increasing, along with numerous challenges in educating the children.
For those reasons and more, you can understand why donating your time and talent as a compassionate volunteer in Costa Rica would be so incredibly valuable.
Are you longing to volunteer in Costa Rica, but worried about the cost?
While volunteering in Costa Rica is an amazing life-changing opportunity, it can be confusing to find a low-cost program with a highly rated company.
There are hundreds of companies that offer volunteer programs in Central America, and most of them aren't reliable or trustworthy. Many demand thousands of dollars in upfront fees. Sadly, many people sign-up to volunteer with the first company they find online, which costs them thousands more dollars than they actually need to pay.
At Travellersquest, we don't want high costs to prevent you from volunteering in Costa Rica and experiencing the adventure of a lifetime.
So, we did the hard work for you. We spent hundreds of hours researching, and found the best volunteer opportunities in Costa Rica for just pennies a day!
Click here to receive multiple affordable quotes: One Request, Multiple Quotes
Keep reading to discover the 11 most inexpensive volunteer opportunities in Costa Rica with the highest rated companies in the world.
Costa Rica is one of the best destinations for travel, with beautiful scenery including white sand beaches and verdant rainforests. The country has beaches on both the Caribbean as well as the Pacific. The amazing biodiversity makes it ideal for a thriving wildlife population and adventurous trips.
Despite the relatively low cost of living in the region, volunteer programs based in Central America can be expensive. Don't be tempted to book a place on a project with the first company you find on the Internet - that trip could cost you thousands of dollars more than it needs to.
Instead you should read this article first, as it gives you the details about 14 of the best, low cost but high quality Costa Rica volunteer programs that are available.
Costa Rica faces many problems, including deforestation due to land being needed for agriculture and crops to feed cattle. This in turn creates problems for the animals and birds who make their home in these rapidly decreasing forested area. Add on the various issues related to poverty and broken families, including an increasing number of orphanages and challenges in education and you can see why donating your time and effort as a volunteer in Costa Rica would be so valuable.
If you are interested in learning more about what the best companies around can offer in terms of locations, types of project and overall pricing of their schemes take a look at the following 14 best inexpensive volunteer opportunities in Costa Rica.
Revered as one of the top organizations for creative and affordable volunteer programs in Costa Rica that are also safe, RCDP International was originally founded by a grad student from Colorado in 1998. After many volunteer projects all over the world he decided to start the very first orphanage in Kathmandu, Nepal.
Being a pioneer in this field in India allowed him the opportunity to be the first to organize such care for children of poverty stricken families and utilize volunteers to help participate in these projects. In the first year he had 1,000 volunteers eager to help. Through trial and error and much feedback from volunteers he was able to reorganize projects and add language and immersion programs, and also start a Himalayan program.
Through strength in numbers with staff and volunteers he was able to grow this organization to include other countries. In Costa Rica for instance, you can volunteer for a few programs focusing on children and their wellbeing.
Today many other volunteer organizations offer volunteer programs however RCDP International is still the lowest priced program with the safest and highest standards having served 12,000 volunteers. Their attention to such detail and care has them rated as A plus on the top 14 best volunteer programs in Costa Rica.
This orphanage volunteer program in Costa Rica aims to ensure that these children of abuse, abandonment and extreme adversity have proper medical care, healthy meals, a safe warm place and love. Volunteers help with cleaning, meals, bathing, playing games, reading and helping to ensure their overall wellbeing.
This program is geared at preserving the number of sea turtles. Through research and data keeping, they can monitor these beautiful creatures. Volunteers help with beach patrol searching for eggs for the hatcheries, research and as a part of the baby turtle release program.
This program is aimed at protecting all marine life like sharks, pelicans, turtles and crocodiles just to name a few. They have to ensure that they are not poached, harmed and have healthy numbers. Volunteers assist in any of these areas: education of marine life, maintenance, conservation, beach patrol, research, data collection, egg collection and much more.
Volunteers found the experience amazing and people very friendly. They took a couple of days to get used to the culture but subsequently found it fantastic. Housing conditions were good as per the local circumstances. They were cared for by the host families and the support provided by the organization was good. Although the program was not cheap it was value for money and they could also see wonderful places and take part in sports and trips.
RCDP offers the most affordable volunteer abroad program in Costa Rica starting at $235. This is paid directly to the host family, making RCDP one of the most honest and transparent organizations of its kind.
IFRE Volunteers was created in 2005 and operates in 18 countries with 200 projects, and serves over 17,000 volunteers around the world. A 501 C 3, IFRE is one of the leading volunteer abroad programs based in Dallas Texas. It is one the most respected and revered volunteer organizations in Costa Rica offering life changing volunteer abroad experiences to thousands of volunteers.
A volunteer trip with IFRE will change you forever. In their volunteer abroad program, you will discover your purpose while making a dramatic impact on the lives of incredible people who desperately need you. Every volunteer project is constructed with purpose and focus.
IFRE philosophy is grounded in the belief that a meaningful hands-on experience is only created out of an intimate connection with grass root projects, local people and culture of another country. They offer an experience unlike any other with involvement in volunteer services and travel. Enjoy getting to know your surroundings by doing something to change the lives of others.
Their projects include orphanages, working with children, teaching in rural schools, and medical/healthcare projects. Another exciting feature of IFRE is that they offer a top rated but very low-cost volunteer program in Costa Rica. It is their determination and dedication to volunteers and projects that has them rated A plus and on the top 14 list of best volunteer programs in Costa Rica.
Teaching English is an important program, as most jobs these children will have in future will be around tourism. This is to widen their abilities of language, allowing them more opportunity by being bilingual. Volunteers teach English or math, help with homework, spelling, conversational English, reading and writing
This program is designed to help elders who have been neglected, or do not have family to take care of them. The focus is to create an environment that brings them peace of mind, and provides them with good nutrition, medical care and shelter. Volunteers take care of these elders, read and talk to them, play games, do their cleaning, serve them meals, and take their basic vitals and carry out overall care.
Medical volunteer program in Costa Rica helps those less fortunate who are unable to get proper medical care. Doctors and nurses assist in healing the sick regardless of their situation, educating them about better hygiene and nutrition. Volunteers assist doctors and nurses with taking data pertaining to patients, their vitals, greeting and comforting them. This is a great intern program.
IFRE is a highly rated volunteer organization, as seen from the online reviews of volunteers who have been through the program. IFRE alumni praise the well organized and overall excellent experiences they had on well organized projects with a great learning environment.
They also appreciated the efforts of the staff and local host families, whom they found be very The environment was conducive to their involvement in the local community and resulted in a very authentic experience.
IFRE offers one of the best low-cost volunteer opportunities in Costa Rica. IFRE makes it very affordable to enjoy your adventure and also get hands-on knowledge about the workings of other countries. Thousands of volunteers have come before and had wonderful results with their volunteering. Starting at $285 for all inclusive programs, it is a very inexpensive way to create a life changing experience.
IFRE volunteer program fees are both tax deductible and the cheapest around. Company running costs are deliberately kept as low as possible to enable them to offer such low-proved volunteer abroad experiences.
Volunteers going t Costa Rica on an IFRE program pay two separate fees.
Does volunteering abroad in Costa Rica spark your enthusiasm? Have you always wanted to travel to a Spanish speaking country? To enjoy thriving rainforests and pristine beaches? Then you should definitely consider volunteer opportunities and programs in Costa Rica!
As a volunteer in Costa Rica, you will enjoy the rare chance to impact the lives of local communities, children and students. Your work and your mind can help impoverished people rise into dominant lives and, at the same time, you can enjoy one of the prettiest countries on Earth!
When you choose to enroll in a volunteer program opportunity in Costa Rica, you are setting out to enjoy one of the world’s most fabled island destinations, and undoubtedly, a life-long memory.
IFRE Volunteers has served over 22,000 happy volunteers since 2006 and for good reasons: they’re the best! With a catalogue of experiences, IFRE has grown to offer its volunteers the cheapest and most valuable volunteer program opportunities in Costa Rica. Thousands of reviews online tout their reputability and all applaud the amazingly attentive and educated staff. With IFRE, you will undoubtedly experience an exceptional program abroad.
If you’re interested in volunteering in Costa Rica or have questions you’d like to ask, follow the link below for more information.
Aid with turtle conservation efforts, work with children in San Jose, administer wildlife protection services and Natuwa and much more when volunteering in Costa Rica. Read through the list of opportunities below to decide which program best suits your interests!
Find out more about:
Journey across the world to a remote, paradise island and join a Costa Rican sea turtle volunteer program. Costa Rica is known as a harbor for millions of sea turtles every year that come to nest in its pristine beaches. You will primarily work to halt the extinction of Costa Rica’s endangered sea turtle population by catching turtles, tagging them, collecting relevant information, nursing injured turtles to health and releasing able ones back into the sea. To accomplish your goal, you will live inside a forest and beside beaches to keep a constant eye out for turtles in need of help. Although the nesting season occurs over a few months, because of the massive influx of Hawksbill and Black Sea Turtles, there is work found patrolling nesting sites and protecting eggs from poaching all year round.
No prior skills, qualifications or experiences are required to become a volunteer in Costa Rica with sea turtles. We do recommend a basic understanding of Spanish and a proficient ability to swim. You must feel comfortable living in a rural, rustic setting that is both damp and muggy as tropic weather can get. You must be 18 or over to apply, but however, if you are under the age of 18 you may apply with your parent’s consent or they may accompany you on the trip. Make sure you are physically apt and fit enough to walk long distances and boat every day. You will set out on great turtle catching expeditions in the Bay of Dulce, a picturesque location. Because of the formality, no drugs or alcohol consumption are allowed during the trip.
The majority of your work as a volunteer in Costa Rica on a sea turtle conservation program will occur in the Gulf of Dulce with both Hawksbill and Black Sea Turtles. Sea turtles have flocked to the sands of Osa Peninsula for thousands of years due to the welcoming environment, but unfortunately recent habitat destruction has left many turtles trapped in threatening situations. Eggs are poached and turtles are un-rightly trampled, so it is your duty as a sea turtle volunteer in Costa Rica to protect these creatures, study their behaviors and monitor their health. You will work with a team of local scientist to catch turtles, measure their weight and size, evaluate their blood, tissue and mucus samples, and then release them back into the wild. You will tag each turtle to monitor their safety.
Other work will include cleaning and protecting the areas where sea turtles lay their eggs. With a team of like minded volunteers, you will clean beaches free from garbage and other river dump. You will also work to reforest the local mangroves by working in local nurseries. When not cleaning or catching, you will work in sea turtle rehabilitation centers where you will feed, clean and discover the best ways to care for turtles. Undoubtedly, you will learn an immense amount while volunteering as a sea turtle conservationist in Costa Rica.
IFRE Volunteers supplies you with a single cabin in Matapalo, a beautiful beach near the Osa Peninsula. Your forest cabin will house eight total volunteers and, while it is rustic, we guarantee an extremely safe, clean and enjoyable environment. An outhouse is available for toilet runs and showers. There is electricity, but no internet, so if you so desire connection, make sure to bring your mobile phone with a data plan. Three local meals a day are supplied as part of your volunteer fee and local staff will stay within contact if you need them at any moment. For longer sea turtle volunteer programs in Costa Rica, we suggest that you check in with our local offices in Costa Rica to update us on how everything is going. A constant line of communication will ensure a positive experience.
Hawksbill turtles stretch up to 45 inches and length and if fully grown can weigh over 150 pounds. Their upper shell boasts a heart-shaped appearance and you can tell an older turtle because this area becomes elongated with age. Hawksbill shells are serrated with overlapping bony plates. Their pointed heads resemble a bird’s beak, and you can tell a male from a female by its longer claws, bulkier tail and brighter coloring.
The Black Sea Turtle has a black upper shell and, unlike the Hawksbill, sports a well-defined teardrop shape. A fully grow Black Sea Turtle can weigh up to 220 pounds and measure 39 inches in length.
Both the Hawksbill and the Black Sea Turtle are on the endangered species list. Offshore poaching and accidental capture by shrimp trawls and shark gill nets have contributed to their decline. It is your job as a sea turtle volunteer in Costa Rica to prevent this epidemic!
If Matapalo isn’t your bag, then travel to the Caribbean Coast of Costa Rica and become a sea turtle conservation volunteer worker in Costa Rica. Work in a rescue and nursing center during your time abroad and feel free to play volleyball, play soccer, snorkel, swim or explore the island whenever you want! Though the nesting season in Costa Rica centers around a few months, the incredible sea turtle populations require attention year-round. You will work primarily patrolling beaches, maintaining nesting sites and protecting eggs from illegal poaching. On the Caribbean Coast, you will tend to Leatherback, Hawksbill and Black Sea Turtles.
IFRE Volunteers does not require volunteers in sea turtle conservation programs in Costa Rica to accrue any prior skills or qualifications for their application. We do recommend that you understand basic Spanish, can swim with confidence and feel comfortable living in damp, muggy, rustic environment, typical of Costa Rica. You must be 18 years or older, and if you are not, you may only apply with your parents’ permission or their accompaniment. Make sure you are physically capable of walking long distances, lifting heavy eggs, boating and completing other strenuous tasks. You are not permitted to drink or consume drugs during your time abroad and personal insurance will not be provided by the program.
As a volunteer in a sea turtle conservation program in Costa Rica, you will work with the endangered species of leatherback, Hawksbill and Green Sea Turtles, and you may find yourself working as beach patrol, in a hatchery, in beach cleaning or at the rescue center.
As a member of the beach patrol, you will work a four-hour shift at night, with the first shift beginning at 12am and the second ending at 8am. With care, you and a team of fellow volunteers will patrol the beaches collecting eggs and logging biometrics tests on nesting turtles.
In the Hatchery you will oversea the safe hatching of turtle eggs, This way, eggs will not be poached, they will not be flooded and they will remain in the correct temperature thus ensuring a proper birth. Shifts in the hatchery last six hours long and start at either 6am or 12pm. Your daily work as a sea turtle hatchery volunteer in Costa Rica will include monitoring air temperature, checking rain gauges, logging data and caring for the eggs. You may be asked to dig sand out around hatching eggs and to log measurements and of the newly hatched turtles before releasing them into the ocean.
When cleaning the beach, you will help remove unwanted debris and garbage from the sandy beaches. This will help turtles lay their eggs in a safe environment. Shifts are short and must only be undergone twice a week.
The rescue center requires every volunteer in sea turtle conservation in Costa Rica to care for injured and sick turtles. Feed, nurture, change water and learn how to conduct a proper assessment of a turtle’s health during your shift.
When working on a sea turtle volunteer program in the Caribbean part of Costa Rica, you will be based primarily in Pacuare, a village near the city of Limon. You will share a bunk bed with a fellow volunteer in a rustic but very clean and safe accommodation in the heart of Costa Rica. Light is provided by solar panels and three meals are provided to you as part of your project fee. To ensure your satisfaction, local staff will pay you regular visits for face-to-face check-ups. If you choose to stay for a longer period of time, we suggest updating our local office on how you are enjoying your home stay and project. Constant communication will ensure an enjoyable experience abroad.
The Leatherback turtle is considered the largest turtle on Earth and is monumentally larger than both the Hawksbill and Black Sea Turtle. Fully grow Leatherback turtles can exceed two meters in length and over 900 kilograms in weight. Scientists believe that these gargantuan creatures have roamed the oceans for over 100 million years.
Hawksbill turtles pale in comparison to the Leatherback. They stretch up to 45 inches and length and can weigh over 150 pounds. Their upper shell boasts a heart-shaped appearance and lengthens with age. Their shells are serrated with overlapping bony plates while their pointed heads resemble a bird’s beak. You can tell a male from a female by its longer claws, bulkier tail and brighter coloring.
The Black Sea Turtle has a black upper shell and sports a clear teardrop shape. A fully grow Black Sea Turtle can weigh up to 220 pounds and measure 39 inches in length.
Both the Hawksbill and the Black Sea Turtle are on the endangered species list while the Leatherback is rapidly declining in numbers. Poaching and accidental capture by shrimp trawls and shark gill nets have contributed to their decline. As a sea turtle volunteer in Costa Rica, you will help prevent this issue from taking greater affect!
Osa Peninsula is the perfect location to work as a volunteer with sea turtle conservation projects in Costa Rica. Apart from enjoying heavenly beaches and thriving wildlife, you will live inside a forest with fellow volunteers. Work together to catch turtles, tag them, collect information and vitals and then release them back safely into the wild. Volunteer work is needed year round, so your work will always have an impact. Help protect nesting sites and prevent poachers. You will work primarily with Hawksbill and Black Sea Turtles.
You do not require any prior skills or qualifications to apply to become a sea turtle conservation volunteer in Costa Rica, but however we do recommend that you are a strong swimmer and can understand basic Spanish. We also suggest that you are relatively fit and capable of long walks, boating and late night turtle catching expeditions. As a volunteer, you must be 18 years of age or older and if not, your parents may provide permission or accompany you on your trip. Consumption of any illegal drugs or alcohol is strictly prohibited, and if desired, you must purchase your own personal insurance prior to your journey.
Engage in the majority of your volunteer responsibilities on the Gulf of Dulce with Hawksbill and Black Sea Turtle populations. Although these species have laid eggs along the Osa Peninsula for thousands of years, human activity has started to threaten their habitat, and as a volunteer sea turtle conservationist in Costa Rica, it is your job to help prevent an ultimate calamity. You will be asked to diligently observe the turtles, study their habits, determine any current and potential health risks and record all data along the way. Measure size, weight, blood type, tissue density and mucus samples daily. Your work will always end with a tagging process and the safe re-release of each turtle back into the sea.
You will also work to protect the areas in which turtles lay their eggs. This means when that volunteering in sea turtle conservation programs in Costa Rica you will clean beaches free from garbage, aid in reforestation efforts of local mangrove forests and aid nearby nurseries. You may also work in a rescue center to rehabilitate injured and sick turtles. Duties there include cleaning, feeding, and learning about daily turtle habits. Once again, you will promote the safe release of turtles back into the wild.
The Osa Peninsula sea conservation volunteer opportunity in Costa Rica takes place in Playa Blanca, a small beach located near Puerto Jimenez. You will accompany eight other volunteers in a small forested cabin. The accommodation is safe, clean and equipped with electricity, but it is very rustic. An outhouse outside is used as your bathroom and there is no internet, so if you want a connection, please bring your phone. The dining hall will serve you three local meals a day and our local staff will ensure a positive stay with periodic face-to-face visits. If you hope to stay for a longer period, be sure to visit our local office and update them on your daily conditions. We always recommend constant communication to ensure the best possible experience you can have.
Hawksbill turtles stretch up to 45 inches and length and when fully grown can weigh over 150 pounds. Their upper shell boasts a heart-shaped appearance that’s serrated with bony plates and that elongates with age. Their pointed heads resemble a bird’s beak, an appearance that begets their name. You can always tell a male from a female by its long claws, bulky tail and brigh coloring.
The Black Sea Turtle has a black upper shell with ateardrop shape. A fully grow Black Sea Turtle can weigh up to 220 pounds and measure 39 inches in length. Both species are on the endangered species list and need attention immediately. Poaching and capture by shrimp trawls and shark gill nets continue to decimate their population sizes. It is your job as a sea turtle volunteer in Costa Rica to prevent the growing epidemic!
In 1994, Mainor Khayyan and Rodolfo Orozco, native Costa Rican animal lovers, founded this stellar refuge that is now home to IFRE’s prize wildlife volunteer opportunities and programs in Costa Rica. The sanctuary was originally created to combat a rising threat to macaw populations, namely the Scarlet and Great Green Macaws, or wild parrots. By volunteer at a wildlife sanctuary program in Costa Rica, you will enjoy the rare opportunity to work with a plethora of exotic animals. Unfortunately, due to malicious human intervention, many animals can no longer return to the wild and are now faced with severe physical and psychological damage. Your work can directly help improve the lives of these animals and change the Costa Rican environment completely.
There are no prior skills or qualifications required to apply to become a wildlife volunteer abroad in Costa Rica, but we do suggest an affinity for animals and a basic understanding of Spanish.
Volunteers in wildlife sanctuary projects and programs in Costa Rica may find themselves working in any of six different projects.
Find work at the Macaw Conservation Project and help rescue, rehabilitate and breed wildlife into reestablishing healthy population sizes in the wild. Through direct interaction with macaws, you will also help reforest, educate environmentally sustainable techniques and encourage ecotourism programs. By volunteering in a wildlife sanctuary project in Costa Rica such as this one, you will sift through the layers of sustainability to develop the best way to enhance the wild macaw population of Costa Rica.
Here, wildlife volunteer programs in Costa Rica will focus on providing a safe environment for ocelots, jaguars, tapirs and other native Costa Rican animals. The 15-acre plot of land grants animals all the space they need to enjoy proper rehabilitation, It is your job to provide the love, care and attention needed to heal them.
Since 2000, this sanctuary has focused on planting, replanting and protected forested areas for the resident wild animals that roam their lands. Since its inception, hundreds of macaws, parrots, sloths, iguanas, monkeys and other animals have benefited off of the newly planted trees. It is your job when volunteering in this wildlife conservation project in Costa Rica to ensure the continuance of these trees.
The wildlife volunteer sanctuary in Costa Rica receives animals from the System of National Areas of Conservation, or SINAC, from the national police and fire department and from local citizens. Because of these associations, this refuge experiences a constant influx of damaged animals and needs constant help to care for them. Become involved with rescuing animals, the neonatal care center, the veterinary clinic, the quarantine zone, the food preparation area, the large bird enclosure and the residential area during your stay. As a wildlife sanctuary volunteer in Costa Rica, you will spend most of your time with animals at this sanctuary.
This particular animal refuge is aimed to support the ecotourism industry of Costa Rica. When volunteering in wildlife sanctuary projects in Costa Rica here, you will aid the effort to educate visitors about animal species native to Costa Rica and the environmental threats they face day in and day out. Furthermore, you will help with conservation, rescue, rehabilitation, release and reforestation efforts that occur every day at the sanctuary. You will also spend time training under an experienced guide to better understand content and how to educate visitors.
The Jabillo, Guayacan, Sura and Jobo trees are all native species to Costa Rica and require constant management to ensure a safe habitat for the monkeys, deer, birds and other rescued animals that feed off of their produce. By volunteer in wildlife sanctuaries in Costa Rica dedicated to reforestation, you will help control and sustain the habitats of animals all across the country.
Your responsibilities as a wildlife conservationist volunteer in Costa Rica will vary depending upon which sanctuary you find yourself in, but always your role will positively impact the lives of Costa Rican animal populations. In general, you can always expect to work with animal feedings, cleanings, emergencies, rehabilitation efforts, tree planting, ecotourism, construction projects and agricultural productions.
When volunteering in a wildlife project in Costa Rica, you will share a bunk bed in a volunteer house. The house will not have air conditioning, but a fan overhead will ensure comfort. Take note that there is Wi-Fi but only between the hours of 12pm-2pm and after 5pm. Taxis and public transportation is readily available as well as a general store within one kilometer of your sanctuary. All meals are provided, with vegetarians allotted for as well and the closest hospital is forty minutes away in the case of an emergency.
Become a volunteer with children in an orphanage in Costa Rica and a helping hand to orphans and children who have lost their homes and childhoods to child abuse, neglect and poverty. You will primarily help teach children basic English, help with their homework and organize creative and exciting extra-curricular activities such as music, drawing and art related games. This particular program is the perfect way to share your passion for helping others in a foreign country.
While not required, it is highly recommended that you have a beginner or intermediate level of Spanish when volunteering in an orphanage project in Costa Rica. If you do not at the time of your application, you may still be accepted, but we suggest enrolling a Spanish language course prior to your arrival so that your trip is more rewarding for both you and the children with whom you will interact. Apart from a patient, lively and flexible personality, you do not need any other experience or qualifications to apply. Of course, prior experience with children is a plus but also not needed.
Your responsibilities as a volunteer in a San Jose orphanage in Costa Rica include assisting the local staff with adolescent supervision, teaching English, aiding with homework, playing games and more. Your basic daily tasks will also include helping with laundry, maintaining the property and cleaning the building. You may also be asked to help with more administrative tasks depending upon the specific needs of your orphanage.
As a volunteer in an orphanage in Costa Rica, you will live with a pre-approved host family that is well-respected socially and experienced in hosting international volutneers prior to you. All homes are safe and you will enjoy a private room with shared bathroom facilities (hot water included and western style toilets included!). Your host family will prepare three meals a day for you, and if needed will pack a to-go lunch for you if you so desire.
If you so desire and speak Spanish, you may ask to stay at your orphanage and enjoy 24/7 interaction with the children. Regardless of your stay, we recommend that when volunteering in a San Jose orphanage in Costa Rica, you provide constant updates to our local office to ensure a positive stay. Constant communication will guarantee an enjoyable experience abroad.
Unfortunately, while the central cities of Costa Rica are thriving economically, rural cities and their schools continue to fall behind their urban counterparts. Poor infrastructure and a lack of funding have dissuaded qualified teachers from lending a hand, thus snowballing the problem out of control. When you volunteer to teach English in Costa Rica, you can help teach English, art, physical education and more. Your direct work will help decrease the rising dropout rates in rural towns and prevent education gap from growing. You may choose to volunteer at the kindergarten level, elementary school level or high school level. Wherever you find yourself, these children need your expertise ASAP.
It is not required for your application, but we do suggest that you have a beginner or intermediate grasp of Spanish. If not, we highly suggest that you enroll in a Spanish language course prior to your arrival so as to better improve your experience and the impact you can have on the children with whom you interact. Take note that most schools require a dress code, so no shorts or sleeveless shirts are allowed. While there are no other pre-outlined qualifications, a flexible, reliable and enthusiastic attitude is a must-have if you intend to volunteer teaching English in Costa Rican local communities.
When volunteering in English teaching schools in Costa Rica, you will work closely with kindergarten, elementary and high school level students. The options to teach English, French, math, art, physical education and science exist. Depending upon your personal experience, the best fit will be provided.
To guarantee an enjoyable volunteer program teaching English in Costa Rica, you will stay with a pre-screened host family that is both respected and experienced in hosting volunteers prior to you. You will most likely enjoy a private room with shared bathroom facilities, which includes hot water and a wester style toilet. You will enjoy the chance to do laundry at home, and your host family will even do it for you for a small fee. Three local meals a day are included in your program fee. Our local staff will check up on you periodically with face-to-face encounters, but you may also contact our local office and officials at any time if you so desire.
This organization is a highly recommended volunteer abroad program in Costa Rica due to its level of satisfaction, safety, and affordability. Global Crossroads LLC was registered in Dallas, Texas in 2003, and is one of the fastest growing volunteer and vacation organizations. It offers tailored programs to fit the needs of any traveler or volunteer.
Located throughout Asia, Africa, and Latin America, you can volunteer abroad in 18 countries. Internships are available along with mini-ventures and group escapes. They have served 18,000 travelers throughout the world.
Their belief is to expand the experience by not only putting volunteers into grassroots projects but also meeting the individual needs of the volunteer. The difference with this organization is the customized programs that fit everyone’s needs. Costa Rica is a beautiful place to enjoy many splendors and meet people, learn about their history, food and music.
With the dedication Global Crossroads has towards their programs, communities they help and travelers put them in an A plus rating on the top 14 best volunteer organizations in Costa Rica.
Children Volunteer Programs in Costa Rica are geared to contribute to the wellbeing of abandoned children. Many children may have lost their parents, or were abused or abandoned. This orphanage is here to ensure a safe, healthy and educational atmosphere for the children. Volunteers help in feeding, bathing, cleaning and playing games, and read to them, making sure to give lots of love.
This program is focused on increasing the numbers of sea turtles. Data and research enables them to keep track of everything, and the hatcheries ensure proper development as well as a release program. You will be a part of the beach patrol which looks for eggs for the hatchery, and do research, as well as participate in the release program.
Global Crossroad volunteers report that they really enjoyed the time spent on their programs, especially those working with the kids. They had a good experience and learned a lot about the culture and community. They were able to learn Spanish and form connections with the local people and their host families made them comfortable and the food was good.
Read more reviews at abroad review
Global Crossroad runs highly inexpensive volunteer opportunities in Costa Rica starting at $285. This program is trusted by thousands of volunteers who came before and enjoyed the experience at a very inexpensive price.
In 2004 co-founders Cedric Hodgeman and Raul Roman met at Cornell University where they decided to take a different look at engaging with the world. They felt that bringing people together in a collective way inspires change. After many years of traveling, studying, and serving in countries of Asia, Latin America and Africa they became inspired to start UbelongVolunteer Organization.
They proved their ability to help volunteers get the most out of the travel experience making a change in the world and all for a very affordable price. The volunteer programs in Costa Rica are the following: construction, care giving, education and environment. They have the best rating among volunteers and have remained highly rated as a volunteer organization in a short amount of time. Ubelong now offers one of the best inexpensive volunteer opportunities in Costa Rica
Many buildings and schools are in great need of funding and repair. The goal for this project is to ensure that the buildings and schools needing repair get it through reconstruction and painting. Volunteers work no set schedule but help in painting and construction where needed in Cartago and surrounding areas.
This program aids children from abusive or poverty stricken lives, as well as senior citizens from disadvantaged backgrounds. The program assists in education, emotional support and teaching new skills. Volunteers work six to seven hours a day playing games, helping with meals, education and ensure the overall well being of children and the elderly.
This program's goal is to help find solutions to environmental hazards such as deficient water sewage systems. Raising awareness of the population, volunteers help spread the word of conservation and healthy practices throughout the town and surrounding areas.
The reviews for Ubelong are positive and talk about how a variety of programs and their affordability made it possible to volunteer. They appreciated the home stay arrangements and found it to be very satisfactory. The program taught them about placing service before themselves and helped them bond with the local people. The people were very friendly and the staff was also very helpful. Volunteering with the elders was very rewarding and made the elders happy as well. The new culture and community provided a lot of learning experiences.
Volunteers enjoy these programs in the town of Cartago, making a difference and having a great experience for a very affordable price. Fees start from $370 for one week.
IVHQ was started in 2007 with a vision to create the greatest travel volunteer experience at a very affordable price – and they have managed to do this, Volunteer fees go directly to world organizations in developing countries that participate with IVHQ creating a network of safe and incredibly affordable programs.
Their vision is to make sure that your adventure is safe and informative. To ensure your safety they offer online training modules on how to stay safe while volunteering abroad. They have a strong standing in Costa Rica, as well as 30 other countries serving 42,000 volunteers worldwide. They are highly respected and one of the best volunteer organizations among the hundreds of volunteer opportunities in Costa Rica.
This program focuses on children with physical and intellectual disabilities, as well as adults suffering from autism. Their goal is to give care to them, ensuring that their needs are met through therapies and special education classes. Volunteers assist the caregivers with meals, classroom, special needs, education and overall giving the patient a break from their regular caregiver.
This program is geared towards the conservation of turtle eggs and sea turtles, creating sustainable egg protection programs. Volunteers help tag turtles, study alongside a biologist working with egg hatcheries, beach patrol etc.
This program focuses on children, teenagers and adults practicing English and learning more. Volunteers create workshops, work alongside a teacher, help enhance their English skills and teach educational games.
IVHQ Costa Rica Volunteer Program Reviews
IVHQ is rated among the top volunteer organizations. Volunteers stated the fact that IVHQ's programs were very affordable. They appreciated the connections made by them within the community and described it as an experience that was immeasurable to any life experience you will have. They also stated that they plan to volunteer with IVHQ in the future for much longer than one week at a time.
Hundreds of volunteers sign up with IVHQ’s inexpensive volunteer opportunities in Costa Rica each year to create life changing moments. The programs are safe, responsible and geared towards creating a great experience for an inexpensive price. Starts at just $580 USD.
Maximo Nivel started in 2003 created in Cusco, Peru, later opening an office in 2006 in Costa Rica, and another office in Guatemala in 2009. They are constantly striving to make sure that the Costa Rica volunteer programs are safe, affordable and of the highest quality. Making sure that the volunteer experience is a happy one is their number one priority, ensuring this through hard work and determination.
They offer TEFEL/TESOL classes, native Spanish classes, international volunteer programs and a native English program in all three countries. In Costa Rica alone they offer six different programs to help make each volunteer’s adventure memorable and affordable. They are rated A plus, and are also among the top best 14 volunteer organizations of Costa Rica.
This program is designed to help aid the many abused and neglected street children. They are underfunded and volunteer help is very much needed. The goal is to create a healthy happy environment for these children to live productive lives. Volunteers are expected to give love, attention, do reading, serve meals and play games.
Teaching English volunteer program in Costa Rica focuses on teaching English to primary school, grade school and high school children, since many of them may pursue careers in tourism. Volunteers assist teachers in the classroom with lesson plans, reading, playing educational games and helping children practice their English-speaking skills.
The goal of this program is to refurbish schools, orphanages and homes in the villages. Volunteers will paint, lay bricks, build roofs and carry out basic construction activities. All projects have highly skilled architects on site.
Maximo Nivel Costa Rica Volunteer Reviews
Volunteers with Maximo Nivel said that the trip was one of the most amazing experiences of their lives. At the end of it they either wished to extend their stay or planned their next trip. They appreciated the work and support of the Maximo Nivel team, who worked tirelessly to ensure their comfort needs and interests were met.
Volunteers also praise the safe and reliable domestic transportation provided, and the in depth insight into another culture the projects provided, allowing them to form bonds with the local community. They also got to work with diverse animals and saw many beautiful sights in their region.
Maximo Nivel runs inexpensive volunteer opportunities in Costa Rica. Try out any of the six projects offered through a highly recommended organization. These amazing life changing programs are in your reach as they are affordable and safe. Starts at just $685.
The organization was born in 1971, organizing bilateral exchanges among German and Argentinean high school students. As time went by they became innovative, offering intercultural exchanges when transportation and communications weren't as straightforward as they are today. They knew that by making these intercultural experiences possible they were collaborating in the construction of a better world.
Coined founded the first school for Spanish as a foreign language to promote the 3rd largest language in the world, and the first Latin American destination, Argentina. They tailored their programs to meet the needs of Spanish and Latin American participants, allowing them to have an intercultural experience in many places around the world.
As a result of their hard work and dedication they have actively participated in the development of international education, alongside some of the most important organizations within the industry. With Intercultural Centers in 47 cities and in 14 Hispano-American countries, Coined staff are specialists in programs that have Spanish as the main ingredient.
All of their programs are life-changing experiences and involve full involvement, whether taking a trip abroad or receiving someone from another culture. This organization is one of the best and least expensive volunteer programs in Costa Rica
Nature Project (Manuel Antonio)
It is a beautiful park and volunteers are placed in charge of giving tours and educating guests about the forest. Light maintenance and some clean up is also needed at times.
The focus of Orphanage volunteer program in Costa Rica is to teach important skills and education. Volunteers help with colors, numbers, shapes, creative activities, arts and crafts, English and basic care, and also with meals, cleaning, reading to them while giving them constant love.
Community Work (Nationwide)
This project is aimed at helping the community by means of organizing soup kitchens, water preservation jobs, gardening work, and anything the locals do to make their communities better.Volunteers live and work alongside them experiencing day-to-day life.
Coined Costa Rica Volunteer Program Reviews
From the reviews volunteer alumni leave online it is clear they all had a rewarding and unforgettable experience. Praising the good prices, nicely organized projects and opportunities to make a real difference through their work means many would like to return to do more volunteering in the future.
Read more reviews at Go Overseas
Coined’s Costa Rica volunteer program is very affordable, safe, and meaningful. These exciting programs are designed to not break your bank but offer a safe, responsible and amazing adventure while helping others! Starts affordably at $925 for two weeks.
ABV is a registered 501 3c, non-profit charitable organization located in the US. The staff has a combined 20 years experience in the areas of travel and hospitality. Started in 2007, they work hard to create very safe and inexpensive volunteer travel abroad program in Costa Rica and all over the world. They always keep in mind the importance of the program and the difference a volunteer can make in the lives of many. They are present in 24 countries and have over 10,000 volunteers around the world. Many of the programs involve working side by side with local people. Programs include teaching, sea turtle conservation, health care, elderly care, and orphanages.
ABV has created low-cost volunteer opportunities in Costa Rica by means of being a charity; therefore you can fundraise for the adventure of a lifetime! It is 100% tax deductible. They also allow you to pick your program, the start date and flight arrival, thus making it as enjoyable and as catered to your needs as possible.
They pride themselves on a safe and responsible experience that is affordable to every traveler. Rated A plus on the top 14 best volunteer organizations of Costa Rica.
This program works with special orphanages, schools for children that are vision or hearing impaired, as well as mental and physical disabilities. The aim here is to teach them through physical therapy, speech therapy and sign language to improve the quality of their lives. Volunteers assist in all of these areas.
This program is geared towards the conservation of turtles and protecting their wellbeing in order to ensure their numbers. Volunteers study their living conditions, carry out beach patrolling, work with the hatcheries and involve themselves in small turtle release.
These facilities aid elders who are not cared for by their families, creating a better quality of life for them. Volunteers play games, read and tell stories.
Volunteers with ABV called it a once in a life time opportunity that will be cherished for life. They were able to meet people from all over the world, and experience other cultures and experiences ABV support was good and they provided all detail that volunteers needed for a great trip. They provided detailed manuals, instructions and tips and all queries were answered promptly.
ABV Costa Rica volunteer program fee is very affordable, You can take advantage of these amazing programs and make a difference today in someone's life! Prices are very affordable and the experience is well worth it! Starts at $895.
The GoEco volunteer organization was established in 2005 by Jonathan Gilben and Jonathan Tal. They both hold university degrees in environmental/geography studies. Both have traveled extensively, and have participated in and created international ecological projects. Based on their extensive experience, Gilben and Tal introduced the concept of volunteer tourism in Israel and created volunteer projects locally for participating international volunteers.
They successfully ran their first volunteer project at the Israeli Sea Turtle Rescue Centre in Michmoret, on the Mediterranean Sea, during the summer of 2006. Since then the organization has grown to cover volunteer projects in 34 countries including Costa Rica with a wide diversity of projects including education, humanitarian, internships, over 50+, teenage, conservation, marine conservation, wildlife, family and medical. Their constant drive for excellence has put them as one of the best low-cost volunteer opportunities in Costa Rica
Go Eco volunteers rate the programs in Costa Rica 4 or 5 stars across the board. Sign up for a project with this top cheap volunteer agency and see for yourself why their alumni praise everything from the budget Costa Rica volunteer program prices to the support from both head office and lcoal staff.
This summer I had the pleasure of spending time volunteering in Costa Rica. GoEco is a great program to go through and is not expensive whatsoever. My favorite part, aside for the volunteering, was taking classes during my first week there. The school is awesome, large part due to the faculty and staff that work there. They are very involved and have a lot to offer that allow you to enjoy your experience as a whole. I was able to go ziplining for a great price which included lunch and transportation! I loved the kids I worked with, but I wish I was able to do a little more in the classroom. The teacher was nice and helpful as well, but because learning English isn’t a mandatory thing and the young age of the kids, they are not very engaged. However, as an education major, I loved being able to see how schools work in other countries. Housing is included in the program in Costa Rica. My host mom was very welcoming and involved in my stay. I had breakfast and dinner at home almost every day, and regardless of whether she was eating or not, she would sit with me and converse to help me practice my Spanish as well. She also included me in family things if I had nothing to do on the weekends. I would definitely recommend this program! -Demejean - Oak Park
GoEco works hard to offer cheap and best volunteer opportunities in Costa Rica. They keep their fee as low as possible but still offering everything you need to make your experience with them one of the best of your life. Projects start as little as $1250 for 3 weeks!
Established in 1997, API s staff has traveled to over five continents and 25 countries and are well experienced and affordable. Therefore they have been there and know what to expect, and can help you too understand what to expect. This also gives them an advantage over other volunteer organizations as they have been able to create programs that are a life changing experience.
API go above and beyond for the volunteer experience. They have one of the lowest fees for exceptional volunteer Costa Rica programs, but they alsofocus on making sure the programs are academically, professionally and personally transformative for the volunteer. Some programs do not cost anything except for a small application feem and all API alumni get 5% off all future programs they choose to do.
They are determined to make sure the volunteer experience is a safe, comfortable and exciting one. In-country support is always at hand during volunteer programs, and they work with volunteers to ensure they find the program that fits their tastes as well as budget. Their dedication to excellence puts them on the top 14 list of best volunteer organizations in Costa Rica.
Read more reviews at go overseas
This non-governmental organization was established in 1989 dedicated to safeguarding ecosystems’ integrity, biodiversity and building sustainable livelihoods. With over 25 years in the business of one of the leading organizations of conservation and development, they started in Tanzania, which at the time was the poorest country. They set up the first marine parks of Mafia Island partnering with the WWF.
They continue to impress volunteers around the world with their carefully created programs. They are present in over 50 countries. Their dedication to excellence is what makes them so widely trusted throughout the world. Their attention to the needs of their volunteers, staff members and projects to protect wildlife and marine life as well as poor communities, truly explains why so many have a life changing experience with Frontier. Frontier is on the list of the 14 top best volunteer organizations in Costa Rica.
This program is dedicated to working with non-profit in order to help rescue endangered and injured animals and rehabilitate them to release them to protected areas. Volunteers help take care of the young animals, collect data and learn about the forest and its inhabitants.
This program helps children with many different scholastic areas including math, English, history and developmental skills. This particular area is one of the poorest and these children wouldn’t have any schooling if not for these programs. Volunteers assist in games, activities, math, spelling, reading and English.
This program is to help preserve the numbers of sea turtles in the wild. Through means of monitoring them and hatcheries they are able to sustain them and help increase their numbers. Volunteers become part of beach patrols for eggs for the hatcheries, collect data, conduct research, and release baby turtles to the wild.
Across the Internet you can find lot of positive reviews from previous participants who loved the affordable Costa Rica volunteer program they booked through Frontier. Terms such as 'life changing' or 'the memory of a lifetime' appear frequently, send many alumni sign up for a second project as they enjoyed the first so much.
Since their inception in 1998, they are world renowned for their programs and participation with nonprofits and NGO organizations making them a leader in the industry. They maintain their high status by ensuring that volunteers of any age have an experience filled with life changing experiences and a vast amount of knowledge. They keep a constant eye on the programs and make sure that they are of the highest quality and yet very inexpensive for the traveler.
They are present in 25 countries and have served over 25,000 volunteers from all over the world. They have three main offices located in UK, Australia, and North America. They have created 450 different projects They are very committed to safety and education of their programs. They are featured often in the world media as a leading authority on international volunteering programs and global education. Rated as highly affordable and feature in the 14 top best volunteer organizations in Costa Rica.
This program specializes in the conservation of all animals of the forest as well as the forest itself making sure to conduct research, monitor and collect data on these animals. Volunteers will work with camera traps, collecting eggs of sea turtles for the hatcheries, learn about the ecosystem and do much more.
This program focuses on the volunteer to assist in school systems that have a lack of teachers. They assist in teaching English, math and other studies, games and activities, making sure all children get the educational attention they deserve.
This program is geared towards increasing awareness of how important sports are for health and overall well being of children, also teaching them about healthy competition. Volunteers assist in creating games, teaching sports, creating arts and crafts and helping them explore their creative side.
These Costa Rica Volunteer programs are so affordable to anyone wanting the life changing experience that over 25,000 other volunteers have participated. A safe, educational, hands-on Costa Rica volunteer opportunity - starting at $1790 for 2 weeks.
Uvolunteer started in 2007 with a focus on operating an affordable volunteer experience in Costa Rica. However by 2010 they were present in 13 countries. In 2012 the direction changed to focus on just three countries - Thailand, Ghana and Costa Rica. Nathaniel, the founder, has been an avid traveler/volunteer since 2005. At the age of 35, having worked with the BBC he decided to take three months off to travel over the South East. This is when he realized the need for a fantastic volunteer experience.
Nathaniel made sure they downsized in order to offer better programs at inexpensive pricing, with a more hands-on approach to ensure the greatest vacation volunteering adventure. They offer ten different programs to fit the needs of any volunteer.
The programs range from community service, child care, special needs children, construction and teaching. They make the top 14 list due to their determination, hard work and great focus on the volunteer and the programs.
This program was designed to help children in schools without physical education programs, due to lack of funding in the budget. Ages 6-13 learn to play, be active and learn healthy lessons to last them a lifetime. Volunteers help prepare their activities and encourage them to participate.
Animal Conservation (Alajuela)
The Animal Conservation volunteer program in Costa Rica is geared towards the catch and release program for the better health of native wild animals; many of which are smuggled out, captured as pets and are mistreated and malnourished. This facility is a rehabilitation center and zoo. Volunteers help feed animals, teach others about the animals and clean cages and give love.
This program is split into two parts - teaching young children English during the day and adults in the evening. The goal is to make sure that they have the opportunity to learn English in order to brighten their future, with tourism on the rise. Volunteers assist in pronunciation, listening, speaking and writing English with the children and adults.
Volunteers with Uvolunteer described their experience as unforgettable with great home stays and the opportunity to serve others as well as form bonds. The staff was thorough and helped them orient themselves quickly. They found the volunteering work with children very rewarding teaching English and playing with them. The flexibility in work hours was good as they could have mornings or evenings off depending upon the project. They were also able to travel and see places as it is inexpensive and easy. The staff helped on phone as well even while traveling. Children were passionate to learn the English language. Food prepared at their home stays was good and people were friendly.
Uvolunteer Costa Rica programs start for two weeks, but are very affordable, with everything you need included, and there will always be someone on hand to help if you need it. These incredible adventures start at just $1040 for two weeks.
Kaya International is an affordable, safe and amazing place to start your volunteering experience in Costa Rica. Started in 2008 in the UK by the director Heilwig, Jones, after her own volunteering experiences and many years of involvement with community projects inspired her to open "Kaya". Kaya in Buddhism means "the enlightened one’. The concept of Kaya is to bring together people and grassroot projects with quality of structure, organization and level of service that enables everyone the opportunity to contribute to positive action and enjoy travelling the world while helping others.
They concentrate on responsible travel, which means being respectful to cultures, communities, locals and environment, making sure that volunteer efforts are benefitting all. They pride themselves on the very best for the communities they work with and the volunteers who dedicate their time. They pride themselves in working very closely with their projects and volunteers. Some of the projects pertain to environment conservation, young mother support, and health and nutrition just to name a few. Kaya is present in 27 countries and has an overall excellent rating, making it the list of the 14 top volunteer opportunities in Costa Rica.
Mother and Child Nutrition (Nationwide)
This program is designed to help less fortunate people especially mothers from broken, abusive and neglected families by ensuring that they are getting proper nutrition alongwith their children. Volunteers help teach healthy eating to the mothers and children, work with them in workshops, watch the children and play games with them when their parents are at work, and also help with serving meals and clean-up.
This program is designed to increase the numbers of sea turtles. Constant observation, egg hatcheries, research and data gathering ensures their safety in the growing and release project. Volunteers do beach patrol, searching for eggs for the hatcheries, research, and release of baby turtles.
This facility and program is designed to ensure that the neglected, abused and motherless animals are rescued and cared for again until their release back into the wild. Volunteers help feed and care for the injured and baby animals, cleaning cages, monitoring and participate in the release project.
From the reviews volunteer alumni leave online it is clear they all had a rewarding and unforgettable experience. Praising the good prices, nicely organized projects and opportunities to make a real difference through their work means many would like to return to do more volunteering in the future.
Kaya’s sea turtle conservation and animal rescue program, both for a duration of 3 weeks costs $1785, teaching in elementary schools and kindergartens in San Jose for 3 weeks fee is $1671, mother and child nutrition for 2 weeks costs $1879, and learn Spanish abroad for 1 week is $1181. The fees include accommodation, 2 meals a day, airport pick up and drop, training, support etc.
P.S. If you are interested in finding a top quality yet affordable health or medical related volunteer opportunity in Costa Rica this is the perfect article for you. We have also outlined 11 most affordable childcare volunteer opportunities in Costa Rica. If you are not into Costa Rica, then you might like volunteering in Brazil, Guatemala, Argentina, Peru, Ecuador and Mexico