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 JULY 20
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 four 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 and Mary
BLOG POST FOR JULY 22
Written by Leaders of the Day: Léa, Nora, Naomi
Our adventure started yesterday when we hit the road and went on a 10-zip line adventure in a national rainforest! We saw sloths, white eagles, snakes and hornets (eek!), and beautiful plant life. The landscape was breathtaking with hits of magenta, gold, and 23.5 shades of green! We were lucky enough to have not-too-rainy weather and enjoy delicious local cuisine on site afterwards. We then headed towards our home base near Parismina (funny how “Parismina” sounds kind of like “paradise” because that’s exactly what it is!). We had a brief stop at the Maxi Palí grocery store, and then we took a speedy boat to the eco-lodge. The beautiful wooden lodge is open-air, has lots of hammocks, and is just a short walk from the beach. Thanks to local director Jason for building this cozy lodge. After a (very much needed) dinner, we had our first mentor group meetings, played 2 truths and a lie, and went to bed under our mosquito nets.
Today we woke up early to the sound of the howler monkeys and played an early game of volleyball followed by some yoga with Mary (one of our mentors). Thank you Mary, by the way! We then had orientation and learned GLA and the staff’s backgrounds, which was very interesting, and for some of us even inspiring. We then played a speed-friending game where we concocted portraits of each other (they were very Picasso-y). Shout out to the Louvre – you should add these to your collection. Then we had time to chill in the hammocks and had lunch (the chicken was devine and we were fighting for seconds). We then had more hammock time and finished up swim texts in the ocean! Then we had an EPIC volleyball tournament by the beach. During the final match, we took many time-outs to watch a caiman (Antonia) being fed in the pond. After a lengthy match, team blue won! Then we were lucky enough to have a dip in the ocean and play on the black volcanic sand beach. The waves were huge, but we stayed safe in small groups and had lots of fun! Then we heard from ASTOP speaker Mako about the turtle initiative, sea turtle lift cycles, and our role in protecting marine life (through nighttime beach patrols and trash clean ups). After another delicious dinner, we’re about to leave on our first night patrol to find turtles! You’ll hear more about the patrol tomorrow from the next leaders of the day.
¡¡¡ Hasta luego !!!
From your GLA gals and leaders of the day: Léa, Nora, Naomi
BLOG POST FOR JULY 23
Written by Leaders of the Day: Magdalene, Cece, and Jubeen
Last night, after much preparation we were disappointed to find out that we would have to postpone our turtle walk. It was storming really hard, and it wouldn’t be safe to go out in the lightning and thunder. Despite our lack of adventure we were able to have some fun hanging around the home base and getting to know each other better. We played card games, talked, and hung out in our hammocks. At ten PM the storm still hadn’t settled down and we had to cancel our turtle walk. We were all sad not to have gone on the turtle walk, but in hindsight we all seemed to have fun and we got some extra sleep.
The next morning we awoke to a very cool atmosphere, thanks to rain that lasted all night! After breakfast all of us prepared for a tour of the beautiful grounds that surround our home base. Our local director, Jason, showed us a variety of flowers and other native plants, but the real stars of the show were the fruits. We were brought to a group of lemon trees where Jason gave us long sticks and showed us how to twist the sticks so the sour fruits fell. Quickly we advanced towards the coconuts, one being an adult coconut, with harder and more juicy meat. The second coconut had more spongey and more dry meat, and the third was a young coconut filled with juice and more soft and tender meat. We then walked back for lunch and prepared for our second activity.
After a few hours we headed to to the beach to pick up trash. Our mentors explained to us that the trash on the beach doesn’t come from the locals of Parismina, but instead from people in a bigger city nearby. Some of us were surprised to find that there were as many shoes washing up from the ocean as plastic bottles. After our cleanup some of the group returned to home base to change into their swimsuits and go swimming in our freshly cleaned beach.
After our fun at the beach we spent some more time at our home base. Most of our service project is our turtle walks at night, so we have a lot of free time throughout the day. After winding down for a bit we formed our chow circle where we made shout outs and shared our glums and glows before dinner.
After dinner we engaged in a heated debate in which we role played fishermen, los amigos del oceano, local businesses, turtle conservationists, and the government. The government was trying to pass a bill that was meant to help protect sea turtles in Parismina and we were debating whether or not they should pass it. We ended up deciding to pass the bill with modifications. After our debate we all went to bed, getting plenty of rest before whatever adventures we have awaiting us tomorrow.
Leaders Of the day- Magdalene, Cece, and Jubeen
BLOG POST FOR JULY 24
We are working on getting the text portion of this blog post, but in the meantime, here are photos from today!
BLOG POST FOR JULY 25
Yesterday we went to town. We cooked empanadas in local houses and had smoothies. We had night patrol for turtles, although came back early bc of the weather. Now we are on a boat tour of the canals and swamps around this area. Just saw some spider monkeys and howler monkeys, and a crocodile. After lunch we’ll have a Latin Dance class and then a tour of the organic vanilla farm. Then another night patrol. Fingers crossed for good weather!