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.
Cell Phone Policy: The GLA cell phone policy is currently in place this summer to help foster meaningful connections between students. This means your student’s phone will be collected every day and returned to them after activities are completed to have with them through the night. Actual tech times and regularity will vary greatly by program location and time zones. During designated ‘tech time’, your student may use their phones as they wish. Please note that your student may not always choose to use this time to get a hold of their parents. If you are not hearing directly from your student each day, you can assume that no news is good news! We strongly recommend you follow the blog to follow your students’ experience without talking to them every day. If you are a parent and would like to get in touch with your student directly, you can call us at +1-619-758-3031 and we can set up a formal time for you to connect with your student.
For frequently asked questions about the blogs, please visit our Program Blog FAQ page.
-The Global Leadership Adventures HQ Team
BLOG POST FOR AUGUST 2
Dear GLA Costa Rica Sea Turtle Initiative Families,
We are so glad the students are all here! We are traveling now from San Jose to our homebase at the Green-Gold Eco-Lodge near Parismina for the next 8 days (then back to San Jose for one last night). Over the next 8 days in Parismina we will learn about our organic farm and vanilla plantation, take a beautiful boat ride through the canals looking for wildlife, learn Latin American dances, make empanadas in local kitchens around Parismina and learn about life in Parismina as we spend a day in our tiny coastal town, be playing beach volleyball and soccer, patrolling the beaches at night for turtles, go whitewater rafting in the beautiful Pacuare River, and zipline across valleys in the stunning Braulio Carrillo National Park.
Student leaders of the day will be writing a blog post every one to two days to keep you updated about all the great things they have been up to. Remember that our location is remote so for the days in Parismina (Day 3-7 especially) there won’t be frequent communication. We truly hope the students enjoy a break from their phones and immersing themselves in a week on the rustic Caribbean coast.
We hope to primarily give a window into this week through the blog. We arrange access to communication for it and of course have plans for any needed urgent communications at any time. We have five staff directly with the students, plus the support of the Eco-Lodge staff for cooking and cleaning. We also have the 24/7 professional support of the office staff. Your children are in great hands. This is going to be a wonderful program, and I am excited to be part of it. Keep your eyes open for the first student blog in a day or two and enjoy your summer.
Clint, Jason, Sarah, Mary and Amelia
BLOG POST FOR AUGUST 3
On Day 2 we traveled to homebase. On the way we went Ziplining in a national park. In the evening we learned about homebase, had dinner, and had our first mentor groups. Early to bed, then early the next morning before breakfast we played volleyball. Next is homebase and program orientation.
BLOG POST FOR AUGUST 3 AND 4
Written by Daniel and Kai
Day 2 and 3:
The morning after flights we got up early and left for Braulio Carrillo National Park, where the students equipped with harnesses began the ascent up the Costa Rica mountains where they safely but swiftly descended via the numerous zip lines. They varied in length from 15 meters to 700 meters.
Feeling famished, they headed to the supermarket in Siquirres to gather necessities like plantain chips, cookies and other snacks. Some explored town a little and got ice cream cones.
After the long rocky road to the coast we set off on a new way of life: zipping through the canals on a fast boat looking for monkeys and crocodiles and sloths along the way. We mourned for our phones but we had a solution: socializing! That day we all discovered a new mode of communication….Talking.
It was hot and humid the first night with plenty of bugs in the jungle but we all managed to get some sleep.
The next morning we got up early because of the howler monkeys and the cooler bug free temperatures and played volleyball before breakfast. It started to rain so we headed in for some hammock time and then breakfast. We had homebase orientation, finished some swim tests and then tested the waters, and then we had a big volleyball tournament – pink league versus blue league. Afterwards our turtle guide came and gave us a talk about the lifecycle and biology of sea turtles. After dinner tonight we go on our first night patrol! Looking for green turtles that are laying eggs so we can see the process and move the eggs to the protected hatchery on the town beach 45 minutes walk north of us.
BLOG POST FOR AUGUST 5-6
Today we are in Parismina! Touring the village, and then we will make empanadas in local houses. Afterwards the locals will display their artisanal goods and we can buy some locally made things. And then local fruit smoothies to beat the heat. Afterwards we will challenge the locals to volleyball and soccer, a good chance to mix with the locals and try out our Spanish maybe.
Yesterday we toured the organic farm we live in with Jason, saw lots of cool tropical plants and got to try some really local things. Later we had a beach clean up and also got to see a baby turtle released. A turtle nest hatched in the night at about 4 am so we missed it but there was a straggler that needed help. We saw the tiny turtle make its way into the crashing waves, really neat. We named it Turbo. It will come back to nest on this same beach maybe 25 years from now, if it survives now.
Some of us went for a really nice evening swim, others tried their hand at opening coconuts on the beach. Then after dinner we formed a debate club, with local government and 4 groups representing small business, conservation groups, fishermen, and tourists and volunteer groups. We debated the effects of passing a new conservation law in Parismina. And now today as we spend a day in the village we can see first hand what we were debating about- tourists, volunteers, businesses etc.
BLOG POST FOR AUGUST 7-8
Yesterday we had a talk from Jerry about organic farming and the vanilla plantation on our farm. We postponed the boat tour because of rain and are doing this morning. We played some games and had a Latin Dance session with Maya.
We plan to head into town again today to do some painting, visit the local places and have smoothies, and visit the locals on the sports fields. It has been raining a lot so we will see how the schedule goes with rain. Here are some photos from the last few days!