All our volunteers must be at least eighteen years old on their starting date of any program, unless they are accompanied by a parent or guardian. They must have full travel insurance and an intermediate level of Spanish language skills.
Volunteers participating in the English Teaching program must have a good level of that language, and those participating in the Medical internships must have an intermediate level of Spanish language skills and some previous medical experience.
Pre-Med students are also welcome to volunteer in the Healthcare and Medical programs.
Yet the main volunteer’s qualities required for every program are a sincere willingness to help, responsibility as well as a positive and proactive attitude.
Location and duration
A volunteer can start working on a program at any chosen date all year round ant stay from one week on, with no maximum duration limit.
Most programs are located in San José and the surrounding areas, but there are placements in many other places around the country.
For volunteers whose projects are placed in San José:
On your arrival at San Jose airport, a member of our local staff will be waiting for you with your name written on a n notice. Once you both meet, he or she will take you to the guesthouse or homestay in Santa Barbara, introduce you to the volunteers that will be your housemates or to your host, show you the facilities and help you settle.
On your first day at your project placement,usually a Monday, you’ll be taken around the town and to your project placement, where you’ll meet the people you’ll be working with. You’ll be instructed on basic rules, local customs, travel options and what to expect from this volunteering experience. You will also have the opportunity to clear any remaining doubts you may still have.
For volunteers whose projects are located in Jaco Beach (Saturday arrivals):
Volunteers will be received at San José airport by a member of our local staff who will drive them to their accommodation place for the night in Santa Barbara, a suburb of San Jose city.
A local volunteer coordinator will pick them up on Sunday morning, provide them with a full orientation and then continue to their final destination using public and private transport. Once on Jaco Beach, volunteers are introduced to their local homemates or hosts and, on the following day, Monday, they’ll be taken to their project’s placement and meet the staff and volunteers the’ll be working with..
The above orientation program also applies to volunteers whose projects are located anywhere else in the country,but depending on the time of arrival at San José airport, they may not need to spend the night in Santa Barbara and continue to their project’s location on the same day of their arrival (Saturday).
Volunteers for the Agroecology program, will catch the local bus from San José to their project’s location, at about a three-hours drive to the south of the capital city. Full instructions are provided.
All volunteers will receive the orientation before leaving San José.
Volunteers tasks and schedules will vary from project to project, but a working week will usually start on Monday and end or Friday; leaving the weekends free for relaxing, socializing, sightseeing and travelling.
We try to be as flexible as possible and allow volunteers to take an additional day off now and then, on special request and with notice given well in advanced. Yet volunteers must be aware that most of our projects depend greatly on their assistance and that they have a responsibility towards the people involved in their program.
A volunteer weekday schedule will vary from day to day according to the project’s requirements of each day, but working usually starts at seven am and finishes at about four pm.Sometimes work ends a couple of hours early, sometimes a couple of hours late; so flexibility is a must.
It is a good idea to start the working day planning the schedule of the day ahead when arriving to your placement each morning.
Weekends are your relaxing days and a good plan may be to go to the sunny beaches or explore the many beautiful landscapes of this paradisiac country. If you are not sure of where to begin, ask the local team for ideas and advice. The choice is endless and there is something for every taste.