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 JUNE 28
Greetings from Guanacaste Costa Rica!
Today is arrival day and it was a long one. Majority of the students, 19 out of 22, have safely arrived to their home base at Angels Ecolodge. The first half of students got to enjoy the pool during this very hot day. They also were lucky enough to see a pack of monkeys. When the last batch of students arrived, we headed towards Angels Ecolodge and had our amazing dinner by our kitchen staff.
After dinner we took our group photo and returned back to the pool to cool off after the long day. Tomorrow we will be joined by the missing 3 students and have a day of orientation. We are all looking forward to our time at Surf Sports and Sustainability program and hopefully be awesome surfers by the end of the program. Pura Vida!
-Jesus, International Director
BLOG POST FOR JUNE 29
Hello Parents and loved ones! Today is day 2, also known as orientation day. Students were given a rigorous course on GLA’s policies and guidelines. In between our orientation we were also able to create our community agreements as well as complete our health checks and swim tests. After taking care of business students were able to head to the local soccer field to play with some local students.
After the game of soccer we were able to visit Playa Junquillal to catch the sunset and meet the missing 3 students in our program (Rakan, Clover, and Isaac). After we caught the sunset we headed back to enjoy our Tico Tacos and finish up with our mentor groups. Moving forward the blogs will be written by our leaders of the day. Tomorrow we are excited to head to surf class and catch some waves. Pura Vida!
-Jesus, International Director
BLOG POST FOR JUNE 30
Written by Alice M.
Day 3 officially began at 7:00am with Breakfast. An assortment of drinks was served along with fruits and pancakes. Soon after, the crew headed down to Playa Avellanas Beach for the first surf lesson! The water was beautiful and everyone caught a wave. After, we met some local vendors selling jewelry and had smoothies at the bar.
At noon we came back to home base and had both Veggi and Chicken rice along with salads, beans, and fried plantains. The crew stopped by the market before our Farm Tour began. At the Farm, we fed and milked goats and helped with the decomposing process for the sustainable ecosystem that thrives there. Before heading back to base, the hosts gave us a chance to try homemade goat cheese with crackers and freshly made tortillas! For dinner, Costa Rican Aztec Soup (Tomato Soup) was served with meatballs and cheese sticks.
BLOG POST FOR JULY 1
Written by Leader of the Day: Brody
Today we woke up at 6:30am to catch breakfast at 7:00am which was a delicious assortment of spreads and jams which topped lightly toasted bread. Following breakfast we went on a mangrove tour to learn about the benefits and influence of the red, black, and white mangrove trees. Mangrove trees have many benefits including: cleaning the air, providing a home for native wildlife species, and helping with erosion.
After finishing up the mangrove tour we painted meaningful wooden signs to hang up around the beach, then we took a bumpy bus ride back to camp to eat lunch. Lunch consisted of: beef fajitas, rice ,and beans. Later we took a short bus ride to a local school and refurbished the children’s hop scotch and other games. After repainting the children’s games we went to play a very fun and rainy soccer game which was a close game and ended 5-6.
To end the day we had a delicious dinner with fish sticks and fries.
BLOG POST FOR JULY 3
Written by Avery and Peter
¡Hola a todos!
This morning we woke up and had a nice breakfast and then headed out bright and early, as usual, jamming out to Taylor Swift on our way to the beach. Once there, we began our service with some games, and then got right into picking up microplastics. We then did a clean up of all trash across the whole beach. We got 12 minutes to swim in the ocean before heading back which quickly went from a calm and low tide to some intense powerful currents as we were getting out. We all successfully got back to home base to a delicious lunch of chicken nuggets (tofu for vegetarians), rice, mashed potatoes, and veggies.
After lunch we had free time where many of us swam in the pool until we had a guest speaker. The speaker was from an organization called Surf4Youth. Surf4Youth takes underprivileged Costa Rican Kids and provides gear and teaches them to surf. After the guest speaker we had free time where it started to storm up and into Dinner during a beautiful sunset. Finally we ended the day with a lesson about Mindfulness.
BLOG POST FOR JULY 5
Rise and shine! Day 8 kicked off at 5:50 in the morning with a delicious breakfast featuring a variety of cereals. By 7 o’clock, we were already on our way to the boat, eager to embark on a day of adventure. Onboard, we lounged on the deck, basking in the sun and indulging in mouthwatering burritos prepared by the boat staff. Snorkeling followed, where we encountered and gently held a starfish and a pufferfish. The excitement continued with dives and swimming alongside a large lilypad floatie. Around 11 o’clock, we set sail back to our home base. Later in the day, from 3 to 5, we played a spirited game of soccer, followed by a relaxing evening to unwind and recharge.
BLOG POST FOR JULY 6
Written by Ethan W.
To start our day off, we woke up and had eggs, toast and fruit for breakfast. Next we learned some new yoga positions and loosened up with a relaxing yoga session. After that, we had lasagna and salad for lunch which was incredibly delicious. After a short break and fun activities, everyone went to visit Marcia and helped plant, grow and sustain the beautiful forests. Everyone learned lots about sustainability and the process of maintaining a forest. Following this experience, we were met with an authentic traditional Costa Rican meal for dinner: Ceviche. After dinner everyone partook in the nightly mentor groups and had a nice relaxing night.
BLOG POST FOR JULY 7
Written by Liset – Leader of the Day
This morning the group woke up and had a breakfast of gallo pinto, eggs, tortillas, and sausages. Then we went to the Guanacaste Water Center for our service. We re-potted, replanted, and picked plants to help out the workers there. Back at home base, we had a lunch of grilled fish, rice, and sweet plantains.
We then had a bit of free time before we headed off to surf. Today the waves were 4-6 feet! After that, we went to a local fair in Paraiso and then returned to home base for a dinner of chicken nuggets and fries. We ended our night with learning to dance some salsa!
BLOG POST FOR JULY 9
Today we woke up bright and early and had a breakfast of cereal. After breakfast we headed off to the beach for our last surf lesson of the trip. After surfing we had a great lunch of chicken and beef burritos. Shortly after lunch we packed up and drove to our new home base. We hung out in the pool then left for an excursion to beautiful hot springs near our new hotel. We then had an amazing buffet style dinner. After dinner we wrapped up our day by playing a game as a group.
BLOG POST FOR JULY 10
Written by Leader of the Day: Juliet
We come to a close with an Adventure Day. For breakfast we had an all you can eat buffet with rice, pancakes, an assortment of fruits, and much more. Our first adventure was fresh water River tubing. Where we went through rapids and still water. The buffet continued for lunch with pasta, chicken, and cake. The last final adventure was zip lining through the forest, canyon, rivers, and did the “Tarzan Swing.”
Our last meal together on this trip was a bittersweet moment celebrated with pasta, ribs, steak, and a dessert table filled with an assortment of sweets. The most notable dessert were the churros with Carmel sauce. To finish the trip we set individual goals for ourselves and a group goal related to sustainability. Our “OMG” was to conserve water back at our homesites. Lastly, we finished our night with a beautiful appreciation circle and our final shout-outs.
BLOG POST FOR JULY 11
Today was our final day, aka departure day. We started off with our final breakfast as a group in Guachipelin and it was a somber one. Everyone knew that the day would end with difficult goodbyes after 2 weeks of service and adventure. After we finished our breakfast we loaded up our buses to our final destination – Liberia Airport. The bus ride was quiet with small chats here and there, but there were smiles all around. In the end students began to depart in groups and the goodbye hugs were dispersed. There were tears of joy due to the long lasting friendships and bonds that were created over our last two weeks. All the students hugged the staff as well and thanked us for the experience. Goodbyes are always hard, but I know some of you will continue to keep in contact and I’m sure some of you all will email me for a letter of recommendation down the line. Wishing you all the very best!
Jesus Perez – International Director