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Costa Rica Wildlife Sanctuary

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Costa Rica Wildlife Sanctuary

Work in an animal rescue or conservation centre as you aid in the care and welfare of some of Costa Rica’s most enigmatic and elegant residents.

Prices from $1,745

Set between tropical Caribbean and Pacific coasts, Costa Rica is one of the most breath-taking countries in the world. Even though it covers just 0.03% of the world’s landmass, it is home to an incredible 500,000 species including jaguars, pumas, monkeys and numerous species of birds. This is the highest density of species of any country in the world.

The survival of the majestic jaguar is being threatened due to hunting and habitat loss as a result of deforestation and human encroachment. Once prowling over the vast jungles of Costa Rica, the jaguar is now extremely rare except for in protected reserves. Their conspicuous tracks, market value and reputation for killing livestock has sadly made them a target for poachers and their large territories make them highly vulnerable to habitat destruction.

The Frontier-Costa Wildlife Sanctuary project was established to support a dedicated local non-profit organisation working to rescue and rehabilitate wild animals, and secure their future release to the wild into protected areas.

As a volunteer you will help support the work of the local staff at the sanctuary taking care of our weird and wonderful residents including sloths, armadillos, anteaters, wild cats, opossums, various primates and toucan to name just a few! If you have a passion for travel and wildlife conservation this project is perfect for you!    

PROJECT HIGHLIGHTS

  • Gain hands-on experience caring for a range of wildlife
  • Become a surrogate parent to young sloths and primates!
  • Experience life in the Costa Rican jungle

PROJECT REQUIREMENTS

  • Applicants must be aged 18 or over
  • To work with certain animals a TB test will be required

FAST FACTS

Location Costa Rica
Activities Preparing food & feeding the animals
Routine cleaning and facility maintenance
Rehabilitating rescued animals
Release program (long term volunteers only)
Transport Make your own way to the project site
Accommodation Shared apartment

WHAT'S INCLUDED

Before you go Pre-departure support & documentation
Travel & medical advice & documentation
Advice on visas and equipment
Discounted medical kit
Free Frontier t-shirt
In-country Accommodation
Project orientation
In-country emergency support
24-hour international HQ backup

QUALIFICATIONS

A variety of qualifications are available on many of our projects. For example, BTEC certificates and diplomas on our Group conservation projects and TEFL certificates and BTECs on most of our teaching projects. You may also be able to gain a CoPE to support your university application. For more information on these qualifications, please see the qualifications section of our website or ask your volunteer advisor.

WHAT DOES THE PROJECT DO?

The Frontier-Costa Wildlife Sanctuary project was established to support a dedicated local non-profit organisation working to rescue and rehabilitate wild animals, and secure their future release to the wild into protected areas.

As a volunteer you will help support the work of the local staff at the sanctuary taking care of a range of indigenous animals including sloths, armadillos, anteaters, wild cats, opossums, various primates, caiman, snake, birds of prey and toucan amongst others.

The centre has been responsible for the rehabilitation and release of hundreds of endangered animals since its establishment in 2008. Most of the animals that are sheltered in the centre have gone through traumatic experiences, often infants that have lost their mothers. 

WHAT WILL I BE DOING?

Upon arrival at the sanctuary you will receive an orientation and safety briefing, before being introduced to your wider responsibilities. As a volunteer, you could be involved with a wide range of activities supporting the work of the dedicated staff. The kinds of activities you may be involved with includes food preparation, feeding the animals, cleaning and repairing enclosures, training and observing the animals within the rescue centre. Depending upon the time of your volunteer placement, you may have the chance to work with different species of rescued animals so volunteers are asked to come with a flexible attitude and a desire to help out where they are needed most.  

A typical volunteer work schedule will see you work 5 days a week from 7:30am to 4:00pm. 

Long term volunteers (2 months or more) may also have the opportunity to contribute towards our animal reintroduction and release initiatives to protected areas.  

WHAT HAPPENS WHEN I ARRIVE?

The project is located close to the beautiful Caribbean coast in Costa Rica. You will fly into Juan Santamaria International Airport in San Jose on the Sunday where you will then use our easy to follow instructions to make your way to the project site. We will provide you with all the information you need prior to your departure to enable you to plan your journey.  Upon arrival at the local bus station you will be met by a friendly Frontier representative and taken to your accommodation! Please aim to arrive before 1pm on the Sunday if you wish to transfer to the project site the same day, as the last bus departs at 4pm. 

WHERE WILL I BE STAYING?

Throughout your placement you will be staying in a shared house in the local town about a 15 minute cycle ride from the sanctuary. The house is a typical Costa Rican colourful wood built house close to the beach. The house has a veranda for relaxing, flushing toilet, shower, hammocks and basic kitchen.

Long-term volunteers that have the opportunity to participate in the animal reintroduction programme off-site may be required from time-to-time to take up external accommodation local to the release site for an additional fee which is not covered by your project cost. Typical shared accommodation in the area can cost approx. $15 per day. 

WHAT WILL I BE EATING?

Food is not provided as part of this programme. This is a fun element of travelling away from home as it gives you that added freedom and is a good opportunity to bond with fellow travellers while cooking at the volunteer house or exploring local restaurants and market stalls! 

Costa Rica is a melting pot of flavours and unique gastronomic experiences so exploring these and dining out while in town may be a brilliant prospect to spice up your Costa Rica experience!   

Volunteers usually hire or buy bicycles upon arrival to the site as a preferred method of transport and sell them again when they leave after their project. 

Ten Most Recent Reviews for This Project

ADDITIONAL OPPORTUNITIES

Costa Rica provides everything you could ever desire for an action packed experience. You may wish to explore some of the activities and unforgettable sights that are on offer here whether it is in your spare time, or even in a few extra days spent in this spectacular country at the beginning or end of the project. There are so many possibilities to explore – here are just a few suggestions! Try white water rafting, river kayaking, or even ocean kayaking – all activities that Costa Rica is famous for whether you are an expert or a compete novice.

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COSTS

4 weeks $1,745

Extra week $345

DEPARTURE DATES

Weekly. Please arrive on a Sunday.

Please contact volunteer advisor for any updates on availability

DURATION

1 month +

WHAT'S INCLUDED

Before you go

  • Pre-departure support
  • Travel & medical advice & documentation
  • Equipment advice
  • Discounted medical kit
  • Free Frontier t-shirt

In-country

  • Accommodation
  • Project orientation
  • In-country emergency support
  • 24-hour international HQ backup

AIRPORT INFORMATION

Nearest airport(s): San Jose Juan Santamaria Apt (SJO)

WHAT'S NOT INCLUDED

  • Flights
  • Visas
  • Insurance

For detailed information on flights, visas and insurance, click here.


LEGAL STATEMENT

Please read our legal statement regarding the running of NGO projects.

To apply for this placement, click on "Apply Now" below. Fill in the short application form and one of our advisers will then call you back to answer any questions and make sure this is the perfect placement for you. Applying doesn't cost a penny and you won't pay anything until you're completely happy and you're ready to reserve your place.

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