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.
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 throughout the program during designated spaces of time we call ‘tech time’. Actual tech times and regularity will vary greatly by program location. 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.
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
BLOG POST FOR JULY 25
Can’t believe we arrived finally!
We feel so excited to start this new adventure together! After a long day of arrivals and airport pickups we had some time to eat at the city mall and get the bus ride to our beautiful homebase.
As soon as we arrived we were welcomed with a delicious spaghetti with homemade sauce and we were ready to go to our rooms and rest for tomorrow!
We are looking forward to it!
Jonathan, Isa, Kennedy, and Caprecia
BLOG POST FOR JULY 26
Today was our first official day at home base. We learned about Costa Rica, cultural norms, and what to look forward to on our trip. We also participated in team building activities where we were challenged to learn everyone’s names and their dance moves! As a group we celebrated Caprecia’s birthday with a delicious cake! Community is very important here in Costa Rica, so we took the time to think about what we need from each other in our community! Mentor groups officially started tonight and we discussed important objects in our lives and opened up to our friends.
We are excited for a new adventure tomorrow!
Kennedy, Isa, Caprecia and Jonathan
BLOG POST FOR JULY 27
We sampled really good coffee in Costa Rica and learned its history and Benjamin the cat was a guest in our lesson. We swam into the pool and jumped off the dock! We had a heated debate on FIFA.
Yayyy- Alex July 2022
WoaAaAh- Sahara July 2022
BLOG POST FOR JULY 28
Written by Alex, Henry and Brooke
Today we woke up bright and early to prepare for our first service trip! We ate a full breakfast and loaded up the buses to head off the schools. One group went to a school down the street with 13 students. They painted the walls outside, and with help from some of the kids who were interested in painting, got a lot of the walls covered! They also spent time in the classroom helping the students learn their numbers and family members in English, and little did we know they’d be teaching us more about Spanish as well. The service time was finished off with fun games of soccer, duck duck goose, and red light green light. The second group went to a larger school and participated in similar activities, forming new and exciting friendships with the students there.
After our service time, we took a long bus ride to the top of Costa Rica to take a boat tour! We saw lizards, monkeys, a sloth, crocodiles, and many tropical birds including blue birds and a rainbow bird. Upon finishing the boat tour, we took a long bus ride home where we spent more time telling stories and getting to know each other. After our journey, we were delightfully surprised with a pizza dinner and now we are ready to take a nice shower to clean off the sunscreen and bug spray and get to bed.
I’ve met a lot of friends for Jax and Winston, miss you guys!
BLOG POST FOR JULY 29
Written by Téa, Alex and Wulf
We woke up to the sun peaking over the tops of the rainforest, ready to continue our service work. Today both groups went to the larger school, Terron Colorado, where the English Fest was taking place. Each grade put on a presentation with music, dancing, singing or poetry. We were regaled with a very moving performance of Baby Shark complete with the hand gestures. After that, the schools dance group put on a extravagant performance of their cultural dance style, complete with colorful skirts and synchronized swooshing. At the end of the performance the girls ran over to where we were sitting and grabbed many of our friends, pulling them onto the courtyard where they were preforming. All of us ended up on that courtyard, dancing with the schoolchildren with a mix of American and Costa Rican classic moves, including the universally loved ‘Macarena’. This dance party/mild mosh pit went on for around half an hour, and by the end we were all very sweaty and very, very smiley. The ever-energetic kids ran around with their notebooks, babbling to each GLA member in rapid Spanish and asking for phone numbers. Nobody could, or wanted to, say no.
At the end of our visit, we got to watch the kids try their best at the schools Spelling Bee, which we helped them study for yesterday. The energy and love radiating from the children was infectious and left all of us still fizzing with their electric energy. A few hours (and a few showers) later, we made the short trek up to the Spanish House, where we met our dance instructor. To say this man was simply “energetic” would be like saying a nuclear explosion is just “a mushroom”. He had us all hyped up faster than a triple espresso made by a minimum wage Starbucks employee. We were popping off like a pound of Pop Rocks poured into half a cup of water. By the end we all were both curing and blessing whoever invented the salsa. In all, today was a day full of hard work made easy by our incredible peers and energetic environments.
yes cap and dave, I did write this. xoxo, your third child.
BLOG POST FOR JULY 30
Written by Ella, Marshall and Alyssa
Today everyone got to sleep for an extra hour because we did not have service due to it being a weekend. We started the morning with a delicious breakfast. After we all got health checks we were cleared to not wear masks outside! Finally we all boarded the bus for a nice ride to a national park called Juan Castro Blanco. It was a vigorous yet scenic hike that led to a gorgeous lake where we enjoyed lunch with a view of Pozo Verde. We had a nice break with lots of photography. We hiked a downhill stroll exchanging laughter and conversation. On the bus ride back, people took time to wind down and rest. Back at home base, our GLA activity gave everyone an opportunity to open up and share facts about themselves. We had a scrumptious pork, mash potato, and rice dinner and headed to bed!
“Love you grandma” -Marshall
“If you’re reading this Chloe, Kennedy, sarah and I miss you so much!” -Alyssa
“Hey mom and dad!” -Ella
BLOG POST FOR JULY 31
Written by Jenna, Anylah, and Nate
Today, some of the girls started out the morning taking a quick yoga class by the lake with a couple of the mentors. Then, we got to enjoy an American classic for breakfast, pancakes! Once everyone’s stomachs were full of pancakes, we got our phones and boarded the bus to head to the hot springs. After arriving, everyone braved a little bit of rain and split up to check out all of the different pools. Many people enjoyed the water slide, and others got virgin piña coladas served in a pineapple! Others made the questionable decision to heat shock themselves by jumping between one of the hot and cold pools. After everyone finished up in the pools and went down the slide one more time, we headed over to the restaurant to have a great lunch that filled us up again. On the way back to home base, we stopped at a souvenir shop where some of us bought keepsakes ranging from key chains to even a guitar!
After the souvenir shop, we also went to a grocery store where we filled up our arms and a few shopping carts with any snack we could find. Goldfish and PopCorners were among the favorites of the group. Once we returned to home base, we had a GLA Activity in which we had to work together to grab each person’s water bottle which was placed a few feet from the group. This activity was by far one of the favorites. After giving our highlights of the day and shoutouts, we sat down to enjoy a dinner of chicken tenders, french fries, and the staple piece of rice and beans. To finish out the night, we celebrated one of the birthdays in our group, Sahana! She turned fifteen today, and instead of eating cake, we celebrated with chocolate chip ice cream. It was absolutely delicious! We finished off the night playing games and listening to some amazing music from Nate. We are excited to get back to service tomorrow!
“Hey mom ♥️”-Anylah
Hi mom and dad I miss you and the pups! <3 - Jenna
BLOG POST FOR AUGUST 1
Written by Owen, Elle and Lena
This morning, we (the leaders) were tasked with waking everyone up at 6:30 am so we could make it to service on time. Service this morning consisted of greeting the kids, painting walls around the school, working in the greenhouse (extremely hot), and finally playing English learning games with various students. Everyone looks forward to seeing the kids everyday. Following service, we enjoyed a delicious traditional Costa Rican lunch at a church close to home base, and made our way back to home base to get ready for our adventure in the afternoon. Our adventure today was visiting the La Fortuna Waterfall which was roughly a 90 minute bus ride away. To reach the waterfall, we had to walk down 400 steps (brutal) to eventually find ourselves in front of a massive jaw-dropping waterfall that was very cool to experience. We were allowed to swim in the surrounding waters which was awesome as well. The bus ride home consisted of laughs, Rihanna, dancing, and a good time! 😀 Overall, the first day of August here in Costa Rica was packed with enjoyment and fun times.
Love and miss you mom and dad -Elle 🤘
Love you mom and dad! – Lena
Sup Mom, Dad, Janie + EJ. See you guys soon👋 – Owen
BLOG POST FOR AUGUST 2
Written by- Bobby, Sarah and Jaidyn
We awoke bright and early this morning to get ready for ziplining. After a scenic trip, we were geared up and ready and zip, zap, and line. Then after touching earth once again, we visiting the Capi Capi Tribe where we were educated on the beautiful culture including art, jewelry, archery, and language. We then had a quick pit stop at the mini mart and souvenir shop. We ate a delectable lunch back at home base. After eating and tech time, we participated in an energetic dance circle, played a shoe game, and cleaned our rooms as the first event in the GLA Olympics. To end the night, the girls arm wrestled where they demonstrated their strengths one by one.
Love you all! Will see you soon ❤️- Jaidyn
I miss you guys and I am so thankful for this opportunity guys, love y’all! – Bobby
Love and miss you mom and Chloe!!- Sarah
BLOG POST FOR AUGUST 3
Written by Julia, Eve and Shea
Today we woke up bright and early at 6:30 (the usual) and began our day with service! We split into two groups, one going to Saint Theresa school, which is just down the road, and the two others going to the school of Colorado. We worked in the greenhouse, painted walls, and played with the kids. We were originally suppose to take a volcano hike but due to the rain, we had a much needed rest hour, followed by a cooking class led by alfredo! We made empanadas and got to eat them once they were done. Later, we had fair-well dinner for kennedy and a birthday celebration for Owen. We all dressed in our nicest attire and shared our roses and shoutouts for the day. We stayed up late and danced!
BLOG POST FOR AUGUST 4
Written by Sasha and Lindsey
Today started off with a delicious breakfast of pancakes and fruit. Then we got on the bus to go to service. One group went to a smaller school just down the road from home base and the other group went to a new school. We painted, played sports, and taught the kids how to say the English alphabet and days of the week. after service we went back to homebase for lunch and said a very teary goodbye to our mentor, Kennedy. After that we got back on the bus to go to our adventure for today which was hanging bridges. Even though it was raining we had lots of fun. Then we came back and had dinner which was spaghetti. We went back to our rooms early to begin packing!
Shoutout to Meri! Miss you!!! -Love, Sasha
Love and miss you mom and dad! -Love, Lindsey
BLOG POST FOR AUGUST 5
Written by Rowena and Sadie
Today we woke up when the roosters belted out their symphonies. Some girls were up even before that to bask in the glory of the glistening transparent lake. We all joined together for the banquet that we call breakfast. Later we gathered with the youngsters in their place of Learning. Afterwards we toured a magnifique pineapple farm. Towards the end of the day we gathered together for words of affirmation in which we got to share our inner positive thoughts about one another. It was heartfelt and emotional. The sun began to set thereforth, we started packing for the rigorous journey ahead. Xoxoxoxoxoxooxoxoxoxoxooxoxoxo
Love u mom and dad and Abby and John – Rowena
Love and miss you mom dad and jace -Sadie
BLOG POST FOR AUGUST 6
To start off our last day here at home base, we woke up to the leaders Isabella Baldor, and Nayana Shah waking everyone up. Breakfast was at 8:30a, which was fruits, eggs, rice and beans (the usual). We then began packing before our last few GLA activities. This first one was called OMG (One Meaningful Goal), where we shared habits that we needed to stop, continue and start. We all came to the conclusion to stop overthinking and being negative, to continue including people and being passionate about the things we love, and finally to start journaling and living for ourselves. Our next GLA activity was called Appreciation Circle, where we anonymously got to share how other peers got to impact each other. Lunch followed concluding our meals at home base, which consisted of rice and beans, fries, and steak. The final moments of home base were spent saying goodbye to the kids, dogs, and the place we called home for the past 2 weeks. We started our drive to the hotel where we were happily surprised with hot showers and WiFi. We then went to dinner where we all dressed up, but had a variety of food trucks. We ended our meal with our last chow circle and peace and chow hand grabs. Where we all cried – even the guys LOL. We enjoyed our last day all together, where we made life long friends and memories.
Peace out Costa Rica, GLA 2022 the last group will miss you! 🙂
BLOG POST FOR AUGUST 7
And just like that, it’s over. Can you believe it? So much has happened since our first days in Costa Rica. Today was departure day and we had to say goodbye to this awesome community we’ve created along these trip.
The last two weeks have been a whirlwind of fun and adventure. We laughed, we loved, and we cried. We got far closer as a group than we’d ever hoped we would. We (Jonathan, Kennedy, Caprecia and Isa) hope all of you students had even half as much fun as we did. If so, you are going home more than happy. If we had a chance to do it all over again, we would do it in a heartbeat.
As we return home, we want to challenge you to remember all of the things we have learned over the last two weeks and to continue to incorporate them into our lives. Remember the goals you set during the OMG activity, including being more open present and grateful. Live in the moment, be kind to others, appreciate what you have, and value your friends. Enjoy your time back home. We are sure you all have many more exciting adventures in your future.
We will always remember teaching English for the kids, swimming on the lake at homebase, overcoming our fears and ziplining together, all the beautiful waterfall and nature we’d seen and of course all the unforgettable friendships we made! We will always remember you for being you. You were an unforgettable group. You should all be very proud of yourselves.
Good job stepping out of your comfort zone, looking out for one another, shouting out one another for every good action you’ve done as individuals and as group.
Remember to be courageous, to live your values, to connect and influence, to voice your opinions, and as always, to have fun.
Leaders aren’t born—they’re made.
Jonathan, Kennedy, Caprecia and Isa