The following is a re-post from the World Leadership School Blog
¡HOLA DE COSTA RICA! – 4/25/2022
Hola! We are writing this from the beautiful Chilamate Rainforest Eco Retreat. We arrived today after a drive from San José through the beautiful Braulio Carrillo National Park. We spent time getting to know our guides Nane & Randall, and attended a talk by Jaime, a local ethnobotanist.
We are adjusting to the heat and humidity, and are looking forward to all the adventures that await us in the coming days.
DÍA DOS – 4/26/2022
Today was the second day of the trip. We started the day by a beautiful hike around Chilamate Rainforest Eco Retreat. Later in the day we visited Daniel’s farm, Finca Orgánica Paraíso. When we were there we learned how to make organic fertilizer, pollinate vanilla, feed pigs, and had a wonderful lunch. We also each planted a tree, and talked about why Daniel started the organic farm. After that we headed back to camp.
Sebbie and Madeline
DÍA TRES – 4/27/2022
Today we went to the village of San Ramón de la Virgen Sarapiqui. While we were in the village, we learned the layout of traditional Costa Rican villages. First, we walked around with Henry, a farmer, Alejandra, the founder of the community cooperative we were walking around, and Josue, her son. The women-led community cooperative was made to help create jobs through rural tourism. Then, we learned about the process of farming vanilla and pepper with Henry.
After that, we took a walk along a wheelchair-accessible path. We were the first ones to walk on the trail. There we spotted a sloth, with one of the community members. To help, we planted trees on the side of the trail.
Then, we had a traditional Costa Rican lunch with a lot of community members. Following the lunch, we helped create a trail for garden tours to help support a family.
Lastly, we had coffee while Alejandra told the story of the cooperative. We said our thanks, drove away and before stopping back at the hotel, went to a supermarket.
-Shea, Camden and Tristan
DÍA CUATRO – 4/28/2022
Today we drove an hour to the town of La Fortuna to zip line. We were taken up through the rainforest to zip line on a total of thirteen platforms. In the middle of the activity, it started raining, but that didn’t take the fun away. After zip lining we drove to The Oasis to eat an authentic lunch called “Casados.” Afterwards, we couldn’t go swimming at the waterfall because of the rain, so we went to a hot springs instead. In the springs, everyone had a blast, speeding down the water slides and chicken fighting in the pool (nobody got hurt). After a nice refresher in the pool, we hit the town and shopped for souvenirs and practiced our Spanish speaking with the local shopkeepers. After a long day, we drove back to Chilamate, ate dinner and settled down for the night.
Elianna, Harper and Jude
DIA CINCO- 4/29/2022
Today we started our morning with an adventure race. We split up in to teams and had to complete various challenges around the chilamate community, such as an interview with a local, flipping a river raft, salsa dancing, making tortillas, and milking a cow. The goal was to work as a team and get to know the community on a deeper level.
After our adventure race we visited a local school. We looked into classrooms and observed their learning environment. We now have a better understanding of how kids learn and live in Costs Rica.
We then went to a chocolate factory to learn the process of turning cacao seeds into chocolate and some of the history behind it. We learned about the difference between factory made and hand made chocolate and how it impacts the environment.
SO LONG, FAREWELL…HASTA LUEGO – 5/1/2022
Our adventure has come to an end and students are currently sitting in Houston waiting to board their next flight. I (Josh) am still in Costa Rica in isolation, and if you ever have to quarantine, I couldn’t think of a better place to do. What a drag (wink, wink)
Today’s final blog post comes from our fearless World Leadership School guides, Nane & Randall. We are so lucky to have had these two amazing humans take us through our adventures. The love they have for their work, along with that for the communities and most importantly for the kids is amazing. I think I speak for us all when I say that I hope to cross paths with them both again; The sooner the better. And now, a word from our sponsors:
”Coming together is a beginning, staying together is a process, and working together is success.”
As I searched for a quote to describe this week, I couldn’t help but smile when I read this. I witnessed each of you encourage one another to be a better version than you were yesterday. To push limits and comfort zones in ways you probably wouldn’t have and overcome fears together that maybe alone wouldn’t have been as easy.
To see you all find the balance amongst each other and feed off each other’s energies was amazing. Together you are definitely stronger and I think you all realized that. I appreciate you all including us in your tribe and really embracing the culture.
You were the first group these communities received since Covid started and I know you felt how important it was for them to see you enjoy the experience and include them. I think not only did we bring hope to a community that truly needed it but it also gave us hope we didn’t know we needed. Hope that screamed all is not lost. There are still so many amazing people that want the best for one another and share a common goal for peace and more understanding in the world.
Remember, what makes us uncomfortable often is the key ingredient we need to help us grow. We saw a lot of growth this week that I hope you cherish and carry with you always.
Thank you for allowing us to get to know you, for embracing the culture and new perspectives and for all the genuine care and love you put in to each day we had together!
Don’t forget to enjoy each experience in life and always trust yourselves!
PURA VIDA MAE!💚🤙🏽
What I just saw this week of all the things that this group was able to do when they decided to work together it was amazing. They not only brought hope to the communities from Costa Rica, they also brought hope to me. I’m sure they are gonna be ready to make the difference that the world needs. They just have to believe they can do it.
Just want to finish this post with a quote I love.
… If the future’s looking dark
We’re the ones who have to shine
If there’s no one in control
We’re the ones who draw the line
Though we live in trying times
We’re the ones who have to try
Though we know that time has wings
We’re the ones who have to fly…
Fly you people, don’t be afraid…
👊😉 Pura Vida
(You can check out the orignal blog here)