Thanks for the checking out the blog for this Global Leadership Adventures program!
Here are a few things you can expect:
- We typically receive 2-3 blog posts per week here at GLA Headquarters from our program staff and students, so please don’t be alarmed if you don’t see a blog post daily – that’s totally normal.
- Blog updates sent on weekends may not be posted until Monday.
- Due to many factors, including but not limited to internet accessibility, photos may not always be available to post onto the blog. Sometimes onsite program staff are only able to send text back to Headquarters, where our team updates the blog.
Thank you for your patience and understanding, and we hope you enjoy following along on these unforgettable adventures.
For frequently asked questions about the blogs, please visit our Program Blog FAQ page.
-The Global Leadership Adventures HQ Team
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BLOG POST FOR AUGUST 1
Welcome to one of the most biodiverse countries in the world, Costa Rica! 33 of our young leaders arrived today, ready to face the next 10 days of learning, service, and fun. The students were welcomed by a tropical summer afternoon at the airport and headed straight to our home base, a beautiful Eco Resort in Junquillal. We did couple of activities in the afternoon, ate some nachos for merienda, played soccer at the beach, and watched an amazing sunset!
Few of the students arrived later at night. We just can’t wait to see the whole group tomorrow and start to get to know each other more.
GLA BSA Team
BLOG POST FOR AUGUST 2
This morning we had a delicious breakfast of fruit, scrambled eggs, rice and beans, and apple juice and orange juice.
Then, we woke up by chasing RJ (which stands for Ricardo Jimenez) with his Bobsleigh activity, and played Where the Wind Blows to learn more about each other. We also did a big name circle where Zoe got everyone’s name right on the first try and earned a free smoothie from RJ!! Afterward, we had orientation where we learned about our mentors, went over COVID guidelines, and made and signed our Community Agreement.
For lunch we had rice and veggies, then continued orientation. In this half, Daya taught us a little bit about Costa Rica culture, like how “pura vida” can be used to mean many different things! The acronym “pura vida” stands for Polite/participate, Usted, Respect, no American (say Estado Unidense like “from the United States” instead because everyone here is from America), Vivir en español (live in Spanish), Initiative, Dress code, Appreciate every moment and aspect of this trip. We also went over the dress code for our service sites.
We had to do a swim test and health checks to go over general information like prescribed medications and current physical and mental health statuses. After the swim test we had free time, where lots of us swam and played Taps and full tackle basketball in the pool. We went to the beach for sunset and Chow Circle where we gave shoutouts, highlights and takeaways from the day.
We ate a delicious dinner of pork, mashed potatoes, and steamed veggies. We then got assigned our service groups which would determine what we did for the rest of the week. We met with our mentor groups for the first time, and discussed what we expected from the rest of the trip. Wrote a fact about ourselves and had to guess who the fact was about, and also made specific goals for the whole trip and outlined how we will reach them. We then had free time in the rain in which we spent writing this blog.
– Zoe and Luca
BLOG POST FOR AUGUST 3
Today was a nice and productive day! We first had to wake up at 6:45 for 7AM breakfast. We ate pancakes, fruits, cereals, and rice and beans. Then we had to go to our service activities. We planted seedlings and placed them in the nursery, painted colorful turtles and marine animals on signs, and did beach clean-up.
After this we went to have our COVID Test and then to the beach and soaked in the sun.
For night activity, we then had a debate about sea turtles and conservation for their habitats. After the debate we had our mentor groups where we talked about was to conserve the turtles and make everyone happy in the community. Then we hung out by the pool to complete or a great day of work and fun!
– Sophia, Leanna, Gillian, Jakob
BLOG POST FOR AUGUST 4
Today was jam packed with fun activities, meaningful volunteering and discussions. The day was eventful because we finished our signs for the turtle group, and the other group also got so much done by planting 120 trees and transporting them to a delivery site.
After service we enjoyed free time and swam. Transitioning to “Beach Olympics,” we partook in fun activities such as relay races, coconut bowling, and a sand castle competition. Team Turtles won the competition. Then we body surfed waves right before it started raining
After dinner and cleaning up, we went to the ranchito We learned about the “dangers of a single story” and were challenged to think more about how we all are effected by a single story and the lack of nuanced perspectives.
-Nandini, Anthony, Phil, MJ
BLOG POST FOR AUGUST 5
Today we had a super fun day starting off with a yummy breakfast of french toast. We then headed off to our services and learned tons about micro plastics and went to a local school to help them set-up their very own garden.
We prepared soil and compost to grow papayas and passion fruits. We also painted signs and helped out at the turtle hatchery.
After service, the mentors had an awesome activity planned for us: a chocolate workshop! We took a tour around the garden there and tried many fruits such as kumquats and guanabana. The chocolates were also very yummy!
After going back to the HB, we had some free time and then had an intense game of “Jeopardy,” which really put our minds to work.
And of course we celebrated Bornali’s birthday with a birthday cake and a Piñata. Finally some people did yoga and then went to bed after a long, fun, eventful day.
-Kayla, Dorothy, Maya, Nick
BLOG POST FOR AUGUST 7
BLOG POST FOR AUGUST 8
Today was our last service day. Guanacaste Water Center group planted the rest of their trees and completed all their prior projects. Avellanas group picked up microplastics and hung the signs we made in the first couple of service days. After that we had the honor of leading three cultural dances, merengue, samba, and a Costa Rican dance.
Then after the Dance class, we couldn’t go to the beach because it started pouring buckets so we went to the pool at the homebase and chicken fought. Then we did a singing riff-off game where teams had to name specific songs, Daya, our local director, also prepared the best hot choco and biscuits! We had dinner after then night activity.
-Christian, Maya G., Elliot, Caroline
BLOG POST FOR AUGUST 9
We woke up very early to prepare for long day of adventures ahead of us. We started off by driving 2 hours to the zip-line center. We zip-lined through the canyon and saw rivers, canyons, and blue butterflies. Many of us conquered our fears and even went upside down. Then we went for a quick covid test.
Lunch was delicious at an all you can eat style buffet. We had a short hike to a waterfall. The water was bright blue, very cold and refreshing. We then suited up with life jackets and helmets to go tubing! On a tough but fun journey through the river. All in all it was a very good experience!
A fun 2 hour bus ride full of throwback songs made the trip back bearable. We ate dinner and went to bed, excited but sad for our last day.
-Adriana, Karli, PJ, Ari, and Autumn
BLOG POST FOR AUGUST 10
Today was our last day on the program!
We all woke up around 5:30 as we said goodbye to the first group leaving us while we stood together as a group for one last time. After their departure many of us spent a good amount of time packing as the feeling that our trip as finally is coming to an end started to truly sink in.
For the group that was left we spent the time joking around and making the best of the time we had left. We dropped our bags off at the bus and ate our last meal in Costa Rica which happened to be pancakes and rice and beans.
During this time many of us started planning when we would see each other again because we didn’t want this to be the last goodbye!
We then hopped on the bus and left our temporary second home behind. At the airport we finally said our last goodbyes and went our separate ways, officially ending our Beachside Service Adventure.
We all are grateful for this opportunity to learn, grow, and make a difference in Costa Rica and our greater global community.
A special thanks to our mentors and many friends that made this experience truly amazing, RJ, Ingrid, Mag, Daya, Heather, Frank, Alberto, Yorti, Marcia, Berta, Valerie, and Amanda.
To the next adventure and to lifelong friends,