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
Hola, and welcome to Costa Rica!
Costa Rica-Spanish Service Adventure, session #3 has officially begun! 7 of our GLA students have flown and arrived in the country of Costa Rica safely this afternoon at the Juan Santamaría International Airport in San José. Luckily no rain today! We saw the beautiful mountains, volcanos, and locals on our way to Homebase in Paraíso, Cartago.
The rest of the group is coming a little late to Home Base today. The whole Costa Rica team will be reunited later tonight.
Parents, families, and friends, we kindly invite you to accompany us on this blog, where we will showcase the daily adventures of this remarkable cohort of leaders!
BLOG POST FOR JULY 21
Hello families, finally we are all here together!
Today on our first day together in this cultural adventure, we woke up to have breakfast something very typical that the “Tico” (people from Costa Rica) families have for breakfast, they are called “Prensadas” and are two corn tortillas with cheese in the middle and then they fry them. We also had fresh fruits, cereal, and delicious baked banana chocolate chip bread.
We started with the orientation to explain to the group a little about the program, safety rules, code of conduct, and the local culture, we also talked about what we will be doing in the service project. As well as meeting the home base staff that will be with us during this adventure.
Then it was time to explore outside! We went on a city tour of Cartago where we visited the emblematic places of the city, Juanca one of the local directors, explained to us about the popular culture of the city, and its customs and told us about the history of the Cathedral of Cartago and the celebrations of the city. We were able to see a typical day in the life of the inhabitants of the city and we visited the local market, and played a nice game of scavenger hunt. In this market we got to see where people would sell several fresh vegetables, fruits, and spices. We finished our city tour with an ice cream made by a family that has been making these delicious ice creams since 1948.
We returned back to home base where we had lunch and continued with the second part of the orientation. We came up with community agreements, and we finished the day by announcing our first Leader of the Day- LOD for tomorrow and it will be Shiva! Tomorrow we will be hiking up a volcano called “Volcan Turrialba”, and will be having our first day of Spanish class. Stay tuned!
Until next time!
– Nathaly Munoz & Ben Warner (Mentors)
BLOG POST FOR JULY 22
Written by Leader of the Day: Shiva
Today we ate Gallopinto for breakfast and then headed to a volcano, Turrialba. We hiked up the volcano and reached the 3rd highest point in Costa Rica. At the top, we experienced the wonderful beauty of Turrialba and its surroundings. Afterward, we went back to home base and ate an amazing lunch, consisting of chicken lasagna, mixed vegetables, and raspberry juice. We then headed to our first Spanish class of the program. We played a name-learning game followed by an activity where we wrote qualities of one another on sticky notes, all entirely in Spanish. After class, we ate delicious fried fish for dinner and ended the day off with a chaotic game of “Pictionary”. We can’t wait to go ziplining tomorrow!
BLOG POST FOR JULY 23
Written by Leaders of the Day: Mia and Payton
Hello parents and readers,
Today, we had a very fun yet tiring day. We started our day off with breakfast at 7 am with fluffy pancakes and delicious tamales. Then we made our way to the ziplines and had the best time. For most of the team, it was their first time ziplining and a whole new adventure. We did 13 different zipline courses through the mountain and were able to see beautiful views while flying through the air. After, we made our way back to home base to have a nice lunch with delicious fruit, then had some nice and relaxing downtime. Once we reunited, we started some fun activities that helped us get to know each other, along with our mentors. Shortly after we divided into our Spanish groups, which were fun, informative, and enjoyable. Once we finished our Spanish classes, we had some amazing beef soup and ended our day with the game telephone. Our day was very “chiva”. (which was our word of the day). Thanks for reading and stay tuned for tomorrow!
Mia and Payton
BLOG POST FOR JULY 24
Written by Leaders of the Day: Tyler and Maverick
Today was subject to many fruitful changes to our schedule including dance lessons and a lesson on the history of Costa Rica. During these dance lessons, at the start of the day, we learned salsa, bachata, merengue, and cumbia. Then, our GLA Activity before lunch was a debate of Mega-sports in which we formed teams representing FIFA, the Brazilian government, local leaders, children, and a neutral party. Today the Spanish class was taken outside of the classroom with a trip around Cartago to a beautiful park, the Rio Grande Rosario, and a local church! Then, after the insightful lecture on the history of Costa Rica, we ate dinner and played a game of concentration before sharing our thoughts and thanks for the day.
BLOG POST FOR JULY 25
Written by Leaders of the Day: Madeline and Piper
Today we woke up early and had a delicious breakfast before we headed to our first day of community service. During service, we helped decorate and build the playground area at a local school. We painted tires with colorful designs and resurfaced their yard into a blacktop. We also got to practice our Spanish by talking to all the kids and playing soccer with them at recess. After service, we came back to home base where we ate lunch and then had a GLA activity on what our perfect worlds would look like. Shortly after, we got into our Spanish Class groups and prepared to embark on our walking trip in town to Paraiso. We toured a local library, and market, and went shopping for snacks at the supermarket. We got a lot of amazing sunset pictures on the way home and settled down for dinner. After, we reflected on our favorite memories from the day and closed with a game of Spanish charades.
BLOG POST FOR JULY 26
Written by Leader of the Day: Graciela
We started off our day at 7:00 am with a filling and yummy meal of empanadas and fruit. After our first meal of the day, we headed off to the school Florencio del Castillo and began our community service. We spent three hours placing and painting tires with different patterns, creating steps down to a soccer field, and sifting and pouring fresh cement for a new play area. While on break during service, we got the chance to talk and play soccer with the students who attended the school. When our time at the school was over, we got into our mentor groups and discussed our important life values with each other. After discussing with our small groups, we started our Spanish classes, where the beginning and intermediate levels had tons of fun making homemade empanadas with their teachers. Everyone got to play games and watch videos whilst learning new vocabulary and conjugations in Spanish. After classes had finished, we all got to eat our usually delicious dinner and laughed while attempting to solve each other’s riddles. To finish off our day, we played a very entertaining game of Heads Up and ate ice cream.
BLOG POST FOR JULY 27
Written by Anjali
We had a very productive and enjoyable day today at the service site. Groups continued painting tires, laying cement, digging holes, and more! We began the outline for a mural for the elementary school that everyone will be working on together! We are so excited to debut the finished result to you all and the kids. After returning home from service, we enjoyed a delicious lunch that was concluded with the most fantastic passionfruit cheesecake!
After lunch, the group did a “pulse check” survey used by our session leaders to get feedback about how people are feeling, how the session is going, what is going well, and what could be improved! For our afternoon Spanish classes, everyone went out to play soccer! On the field, students were split into 3 groups to create puppets and perform a story of their own creation for all of us to see! Everyone did an amazing job at getting very creative. Once the puppet shows had concluded, a game of soccer commenced. It was great to see everyone having fun out there and trying their best! Everyone had a blast! Overall, a fantastic day!
Wishing you all the best!
BLOG POST FOR JULY 28
Written by Ben and Isabela
We started our day early with some French toast and headed toward service. We had another productive day and were able to get most of the mural done, finish handrails to the stairs leading down to the soccer field, and paint tires, we think the kids will love it! We said goodbye to the kids who we had so much playing with. For lunch, we had pozole soup before everyone split up into mentor groups. Our group talked about colors and feelings and then played some games. Right after a short break, our Spanish class commenced. The advanced class made empanadas with fruit or chocolate filling which everyone enjoyed. As today was the last day of Spanish classes, all three groups finished and presented their final projects. The beginner class enacted a hilarious play based on a short story. Next, the intermediate group presented animals and facts about them in Spanish. The advanced class sang a parody of “August” by Taylor Swift in Spanish about Spanish class. Dinner today was fish and potatoes and passionfruit cheesecake. We ended the day with a fun game and then retreated to our rooms for the night.
BLOG POST FOR JULY 29 & 30
Written by Bruno & Evie
We started the day early as always at 7 am, eating bologna sandwiches, and started our final day of service. We worked hard to finish the concrete art designs and the mural. This includes a solar system design, and hopscotch, which we completed by signing our names and putting our handprints on the ground. We said goodbye to our project and returned home for lunch, which was pork chops and rice. After a well-deserved rest, we headed off to a coffee tour, where we toured a coffee plantation that has been around for longer than anyone in the group, counselors included! After the tour, we picked up some beans and headed home to pack for the upcoming beach trip. Dinner was stew and rice, which was filling and the perfect food to conclude our day. We have a 4-hour drive ahead of us so we made sure to finish the day earlier than usual so we could be well rested and prepared for another day of fun.
Missing you all!
Written by August & Matt
Greetings, GLA enthusiasts. Fun times abounded today as our group had our first exciting day in Uvita. We had a thrilling (read: long) 4-hour drive to our hotel, but in the end, it was worth it, I think. After our arrival, we had a delicious chicken and vegetable taco lunch, followed by a swim test, run by our amazing Mentors Natalie and Ben, and an awesome surfing lesson provided by the Bodhi Surf and Yoga group.
Many lives were lost (disclaimer: no lives were lost); despite this, it was an overall positive experience, and many of us either discovered a newfound enjoyment of surfing or rekindled interest after years of inactivity. Afterward, we had another delicious grilled chicken meal, and a fun LOD activity/Chow Circle, hosted by your amazing LODs, Matt and August. Overall, we had a fantastic day today, and we’re looking forward to the rest of our time in Uvita, and our final days of the trip.