Explore different farming practices in Costa Rica from the mountains to the valleys. What impact does international demand for Costa Rican coffee have on local communities? What does local food production have to do with agroforestry practices? From cultivation to consumption, dive deep into food systems by learning from communities in Costa Rica. Live with a host family and immerse yourself in Costa Rican culture.

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Length Training
Dates
In-Country
Dates
Ages Application
Deadline
Price
Costa Rica: Los Santos 6 weeks

Online training on health and safety, mental health, travel, and AMIGOS history before departure. Leadership and orientation training take place in-country.

June 20–July 31, 2023

15–19 Financial Assistance and Local Chapter Deadline: January 17, 2023

Final Deadline: April 18, 2023

$4,875 – Local Chapter (Find out more about joining AMIGOS through a local chapter here)

$6,375 – National Chapter

Fees include all in-country expenses.

Financial assistance is available! Click here for more information.

  • Costa Rica: Los Santos
  • Length
    6 weeks
  • Training Dates

    Online training on health and safety, mental health, travel, and AMIGOS history before departure. Leadership and orientation training take place in-country.

  • In-Country Dates

    June 20–July 31, 2023

  • Ages
    15–19
  • Application Deadline
    Financial Assistance and Local Chapter Deadline: January 17, 2023

    Final Deadline: April 18, 2023
  • Price

    $4,875 – Local Chapter (Find out more about joining AMIGOS through a local chapter here)

    $6,375 – National Chapter

    Fees include all in-country expenses.

    Financial assistance is available! Click here for more information.

About the Project

Project Type

Homestay, with four spots reserved for students from Costa Rica.

Slang

pura vida = life is good, cool
tuanis = cool

College Credit

Get two college credits for this project! Find out more here.

Service Hours

Earn 72 service hours!

Food

Pinto (rice and black beans), plantains, tortillas
Great for vegetarians!

AMIGOS History in the Region

AMIGOS has worked in Costa Rica for more than 35 years.

What makes this project unique?

Live with a host family in Costa Rica! Live like a local by participating in their day-to-day activities. This immersive experience will give you a chance to use your language skills in Costa Rica. Four spots on this project are reserved for students from Costa Rica so you’ll have the chance to make friends across borders. You’ll also dive deep into the topic of food justice, exploring how international demand for Costa Rican coffee impacts local producers and communities.

 

Chirripó National Park, San José Province, Pérez Zeledón, Costa Rica
two students looking down a hilly dirt road over fields
RSVP for an Info Session

Click here

Dive Deep into Costa Rican Coffee

Zona de Los Santos

Surrounded by Chirripo National Park, the Los Santos region is well-known for its coffee quality. Conservation initiatives, community-led development, and coffee production go hand in hand. As a group, we will explore food justice with the coffee sector, including the production and processing of coffee, gender inequality within the industry, how coffee farms rely on ecotourism, and the contribution of coffee farms to environmental protection.

 

Partner AgencY

We will support an NGO that provides training and market connections to smallholder women farmers in remote agricultural communities in Costa Rica. Earn 72 service hours while volunteering.

You will volunteer at women-owned coffee farms and learn directly from them about the challenges of food production and adaptation to climate change, and you will contribute to a community project. Plus, four spots on this project are reserved for participants from Costa Rica so you’ll have the chance to make friends across borders. You’ll also dive deep into the topic of food justice, exploring how international demand for Costa Rican coffee impacts local producers and communities.

 

Example Activities

  • Hike in the beautiful mountains of Copey
  • Explore high altitude crops like strawberries and apples
  • Volunteer at a coffee nursery

A Day in the Life

Morning

  • Enjoy breakfast with your host family. A typical breakfast is gallo pinto (rice and beans) and fried plantains
  • Volunteer at coffee farms doing activities like gardening, maintaining trails, planting trees, and supporting at the mill
  • Work on your community service project
  • Lead daily activities for kids
  • Take an excursion to Laguna Don Manuel, a lake that feeds several rivers and is home to many wild species

 

Afternoon

  • Have lunch with your host family. A typical lunch is rice, beans, vegetables, eggs or meat, and salad
  • Hang out with Costa Rican youth and work on service projects
  • Plan your daily activities with children
  • Play soccer with locals
  • Practice your Spanish with your host family making tortillas and enjoy dinner together. A typical dinner is chicken or vegetable soup and tortillas.

Program Pillars

Ethical Service

Learn how to create ethical service initiatives by working with–not for–a community, engaging local organizations and partners, and evaluating the impact of your work. AMIGOS works with trusted local partners that are passionate and committed to working with our volunteers on community service projects.

Cultural Humility

Cultural humility is a process of both self-reflection about your own culture as well as learning about other cultures. You will examine your own beliefs and cultural identity and gain an understanding of how structural racism has impacted societies and the roles that communities can take to lead systemic change.

Leadership

Learn, grow, and discover your leadership potential! Explore your sense of purpose and start to establish your personal goals and values through introspection and inquiry.

Join an Info Session

RSVP Here

Why Choose AMIGOS?

Practice Spanish

AMIGOS programs provide a unique opportunity to experience a new culture. Volunteers report increased fluency in Spanish after completing our program. Activities go far beyond the classroom — you’ll lead activities in Spanish, learn local slang, and increase your confidence with real-world practice. You will not believe how fast your Spanish improves when you use it in conversation every day!

Have an Adventure

Travel to must-see spots in your host country! You’ll travel as a group to experience unique destinations like volcanoes, ancient ruins, national parks, and historical sites. You’ll get to see these places from the distinct perspective of someone who has spent time in that country and learned about the culture firsthand. Plus, you’ll bond with their fellow volunteers and have fun!

Travel with Trust

AMIGOS is the industry leader in health and safety management. Our staff is prepared to help you with any situation that may arise. Each volunteer receives a personalized emergency plan, as well as support from local staff teams and a professional 24-hour On-Call Safety Team of travel specialists, doctors, and mental health specialists. A Health and Wellness Coordinator is on staff with the group throughout the duration of their stay. AMIGOS also has an established network of vetted medical clinics and hospitals throughout the region.

Find out more about our programs

Join an online info session!

RSVP HERE

I had an amazing experience meeting lots of people and doing fun new activities. I always felt safe but was challenged and put into situations that helped broaden my worldview.

—Annie, Costa Rica Volunteer, 2022

Program Requirements
Apply Now

Field Notes

Los Santos: Farewell

Los Santos, Costa Rica


Read More
Los Santos: Excursions and Volunteering

Los Santos, Costa Rica


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Los Santos: The Beginning of a New Adventure

Los Santos, Costa Rica


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Llamado a todas las personas exparticipantes recientes de AMIGOS a aplicar al Acelerador de Impacto Social.

Es un programa virtual bilingüe. Las aplicaciones cierran el 30 de septiembre. 🤗
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