first hand Costa Rica

Support Children in Local Schools

Sámara, Costa Rica show on map

If you are interested in working with children and giving classes in English, sports, arts or other subjects, you're in demand in the local schools.

About the Program

If you are interested in working with children and giving classes en English, sports, arts or other subjects, you're in demand in the local schools. In most of the 'escuelas' in this area the children only have lessons in Spanish, Math, Social Science and Natural Science due to the lack of teachers and financial resources. Your classes will be in the afternoons after the regular classes and they are free for the children.

English especially is getting more and more important for Costaricans to provide better opportunities in the expanding tourism market, wich is the main income sector in this country. Therefor especially the parents are very interested in English classes. Additional subjects that stimulates their creativity and develop their individuality are important for an adequate education and are very popular for the children. Your volunteering in teaching assistance and your efforts in creating new material will be very much appreciated!

We work with 5-8 schools and Kindergardens in the area between Sámara and Nosara on the pacific coast. These schools are very small - some only have one classroom, 16 children of 6 levels and one teacher. 

Furthermore we highly appreciate from the volunteers to be active and motivated by themselves, to offer language classes for the local youth and adults and bring their own ideas for the community progress.

Between Christmas and New Year the school is closed. 

During the school holidays there will be holiday programs for the children!

Our Volunteers

Our volunteers should be creative and have a talent for improvisation as even the most basic resources are often limited and require to use your imagination. We are looking for motivated, responsible and independently working volunteers. They should have a basic knowledge of the Spanish language and bring clothes for a decent dress code. It would be great if the volunteers could bring all kind of didactic material (books, games, music...).

The Location

The schools are located on the northwest pacific coast of Costa Rica in Guanacaste between Sámara and Nosara.

Typical day

As we work with several kindergardens, elementary schools and also schools raised from private foundations the typical day structure varies a lot! Mostly you will not find such a strict time schedule as you might be used to ... and please be open for the actual needs of the school. 

Your time in the school may change between 2 and 6 hours a day and there is more work if you offer extra activities after school. 

Your Tasks

Your work mainly includes:

  • Teaching English, sports, games, art and craft or other subjects
  • 2-4 hours of work with the children in the mornings, the afternoon or both
  • in some schools: joining and helping the teacher in the morning classes; administrative work in the school
  • cleaning the facilities you use in the school and the volunteer office; maintainance of the material collection and preparing new material
  • preparing school events like sport activities, presentations, exhibitions, beach cleanings
  • help in the recycle program and in community service: beautifying projects, gardening, making playgrounds, painting etc. according to the actual needs of the community

Details on Arrival

This program is available all year. Please have the school holidays in mind: 

- mid December until mid February (there will be holiday programs)
- Easter week
- first two weeks of July (probably no holiday program)

It starts every Monday. Please arrive at least one day before the programs starts. Your family will welcome you already on Friday before your project starts.  

Free-time activities

After work you can go to the beach, swim, surf or snorkel. The next village with leisure time possibilities is not far: there are tours for watching dolphins, kayaking, canopy, fishing and others. Go out in the evenings to listen to music and dance.

On the weekends you can go on tours in and around this area and there are a lot of places to visit in Costa Rica: National Park Monteverde, National Park Manuel Antonio, Volcano Arenal, visit the caribbean coast, visit our rainforest lodge, go on a trip to Nicaragua or Panamá ...

Water Sports
Swimming
Diving/Snorkling
Hiking
Sports
Riding
Yoga/Meditation

Program Requirements

In order to join the program you need to be at least 18 years old on the program start date. There might be exemptions if you can provide the permission of your legal guardian(s) or if your are accompanied by your parents.
Language Skills
You need to speak English (intermediate level) and Spanish (basic level)
Criminal Background Check
required
Education Requirements
at High school graduation level
Required Documents
CV and letter of motivation
Nationality Restrictions
No restrictions. Helping hands from all over the world are welcome.
Other Skills
Bring creativity and talent for improvisation as even the most basic resources are often limited and require to use your imagination. You should enjoy to work independently and self-motivated. And, first of all, you should have fun and be conscious of the responsibility to work with children (6-12 years).
Time Commitment
Your helping hand will be required on Monday, Tuesday, Wednesday, Thursday and Friday

Suitable for

Singles
Couples

Included Services

Extra security layer by Volunteer World
Volunteer World is the world's leading comparison platform for international volunteer opportunities. We guide you through a safe and easy application process - including all necessary payments. Planning your next meaningful trip with Volunteer World gives you free access to our:
Quality Assurance
High ethical standards & transparent social impact
Flex Option
High ethical standards & transparent social impact
Refund Guarantee
High ethical standards & transparent social impact
Resolution Support
High ethical standards & transparent social impact
Our services are free of charge!
All program fees are charged directly by first hand Costa Rica.

Before your journey

Profound consulting and ongoing support (free)
first hand Costa Rica (your host organization) provides consulting and is keen to answer all your questions. Once you reserved your spot, you will receive the contact details of your volunteer project.
Online preparation course (optional, from $49)
Prepare yourself and become a confident and well informed traveler. Global Travel Academy takes you on a journey before you leave home, helping you to become one of the world's greatest travelers. Our trusted partner for online learning offers courses in "International Volunteering", "Travel Health & Safety" and "Travel Safety Abroad".

On-site services

Services by first hand Costa Rica

We organize the journey to the project and we also do hostel reservations in San José if needed (mostly it is needed!) - and, if you will combine projects, we will also organize the transportation between the projects. You will have to pay the cost for the pickup and the transport.

Accommodation

You will be living with a family in the village and you will have your own room - maybe shared with another volunteer but mostly you will have your own family!

Guest Family
Food & Beverages

You'll enjoy breakfast, lunch and dinner with the family based on the tipical Costarican diet, for example rice, beans, vegetables, meat and fruit.

Internet Access
Good access at the project site
What's NOT included?
Visa, flights, travel insurance or vaccinations are NOT included in the program fees. An airport pickup isn't included within the program fees either.
Flight Tickets
The nearest airport is Juan Santamaria International Airport (SJO) in San Jose. We assist you to find cheap flights to Costa Rica.
Travel Insurance
Going abroad is an adventure and it is always best to be prepared. Sudden illness or injury, cancellation or theft - a travel insurance for Costa Rica provides security and is a plus to have.
Vaccines
If you are intending to volunteer in Costa Rica you should seek medical advice before starting your social journey. Check your required vaccinations for Costa Rica.
Costs (Prices in USD)
4 weeks (min. stay)
$1,120.00
5 weeks
$1,280.00
6 weeks
$1,440.00
7 weeks
$1,600.00
9 weeks
$1,920.00
11 weeks
$2,240.00
24 weeks (max. stay)
$4,320.00
Average fees
$230.00/week

You can volunteer at the project site in Sámara/Costa Rica between 4 weeks and 24 weeks. Please note that the above shown program fees are estimated and subject to exchange rate fluctuations. first hand Costa Rica will let you know about the final price during your application process.
Crowdfunding Service
Generally, volunteering abroad involves certain costs. In case you need financial support, we will assist you to fundraise your volunteer program in Costa Rica.
Deposit (15%)
The deposit is simply to reserve your volunteer placement. Payments are handled by PayPal, our trusted global payment provider. If you don't have a PayPal account, you can also pay using a credit card.
Final Payment (85%)
Your final payment will be agreed with {project.name} during the application process. Common solutions are either via bank transfer or a cash payment at the project site.
  Americas Central America Costa Rica  Sámara, Playa Buena Vista

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Reservation

The social project site is open in Jan Feb Mar Apr May Jun Jul Aug Sep Oct Nov Dec

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