Corcovado Foundation

Mission The Corcovado Foundation is a key player in the strengthening of the protected wild areas, the promotion of environmental education, sustainable tourism and community participation throughout the sustainable use of the natural resources in the South Pacific area of Costa Rica.
Sep 16, 2015

Santa Juana's Students Celebrate Day of Independen

Each year, on the 15th of September, the entire community of Santa Juana is invited to participate in presentations of student speeches, folklore dances and other festivities marking the day of independence at La Escuela Virgen de Santa Juana (The Virgin of Santa Juana Elementary School). This celebration happens all over Costa Rica were the processions of hand made lanterns symbolize the action taken by their Costa Rican war hero, Juan Santamaria, who torched the enemy compound that ended the war in 1856. What makes this so special in Santa Juana is that the entire student body is made up of just 8 students, and all 11 invited families that represent the total community of Santa Juana. So each year the celebration has 100% community participation, and the procession of handmade painted lanterns are judged for the most original, most patriotic, and most colorful lanterns.

 

What makes this so special is how much work goes into the lanterns and how much pride the community, like so many across Costa Rica’s countryside, from the border of Panama to Nicaragua, celebrate the freedom their nation enjoys as the oldest democracy in Latin America.

 

Greentique Tours and Santa Juana Lodge are fortunate to have this same community spirit and values shared with all the guests from around the world who experience the Santa Juana Rural Mountain Adventure Tour and the exceptional rural hospitality at the new Santa Juana Lodge. The very same parents, whose children make up the student body, share the culture and conserve the Magic of Nature, operate both the tours and lodge here in the Central Pacific Mountains of Quepos, Costa Rica.

Sep 3, 2015

You are helping us changing peoples lives!

Corcovado National Park
Corcovado National Park

Dear friends of Globalgiving!

Just a quick update regarding our community development program:  We are really excited to tell you about the success of this program in Río Tigre.

We chose the community of Río Tigre due to the large number of residents who continue to enter illegally into the Corcovado National Park to hunt animals and pan for gold.  The Ministry for the Environment (MINAE) had asked us to help them find economical activities for this community. Thanks to the support of donors like you and the blue moon fund, we were able to start working with the Conservationist Association of Dos Brazos in Río Tigre and respond to the call for help from MINAE.

I am thrilled to let you know that this project has been a great success, especially because the response from the community and participation of local residents in the project has been unprecedented.  The Conservationist Association is impressive: their determination to make Río Tigre a more sustainable and prosperous community is absolutely inspiring.

In my 14 years of working with Corcovado Foundation I have never had the privilege to work with another group as committed and as capable.

Thanks to your help we have provided five more tour guide certification courses for 15 members of the community, and five more local residents have signed up to an agreement to pay in instalments so that they can also complete their certification.

A couple of months ago, we  visited the new trail into the Corcovado National Park that the association built. It took us 7 hours to cover the 14.5 kms (9 miles) of this stunning new trail. The guide was excited to tell us about all the wonderful change that this project is bringing to the communities.  He told us about how he grew up hunting and mining. He was very honest about the damage that he himself had caused previously and how, thanks to the new project, he has now pledged to quit mining. He shared stories about how unpleasant it used to be sleeping in the forest, hiding and running from the park rangers, and how now as a guide he makes in just three days the same amount that he would make on an average month of gold panning.

Since the trail was open at the end of February the community has received 105 tourists paying $75 USD per person for a total of  $7,875,  guides have made $4.200, the association made  $1.050 and MINAE made $1050 for park entrances.

Thank you so much for supporting these great efforts.  We are thrilled to be part of this great success!  Your contributions will keep changing people’s lives and supporting therefore protecting the environment.  Keep us in mind this end of the year!

Aug 17, 2015

Education will change the people that change the world

Alvaro and Diego sometime ago
Alvaro and Diego sometime ago

Education will change the people that change the world.

Baba Dioum said "In the end we will conserve only what we love, we will love only what we understand, and we will understand only what we are taught."

As environmental educators, we spend our lives teaching children to respect their surroundings, to love nature and to feel connected to other living things.   We spend our days trying to detect that change in the children’s attitude towards nature, and it is the small details that show us the change within them.

Alvaro and Diego are two children, who used to participate in the Pumas group in the small town of Progreso, a community where we have been involved in for several years.  The Pumas is a group of 10 to 12 young children that gather together to learn about the environment and make changes in their community.   Recently, Alvaro and Diego quit the group, feeling that they were a little too old for the activities suited towards younger aged kids.

Soon after they quit, they decided to join the community turtle conservation initiative thinking it would be a better use of their time.   Volunteers, staff from the Corcovado Foundation, and local people from the community work tirelessly to protect sea turtle nests from egg poachers.  Every night there is a race between poachers and the project to reach the sea turtle nests before a wrongdoer takes the eggs and sells them in the market. 

Alvaro and Diego decided that they would volunteer their time at the sea turtle conservation program.   Many local people in Progreso, work at the project, but they charge for their time.  These kids committed to a full year of volunteering their time to the protection of the turtles.   This was something that they decided on their own; nobody asked them to do it.  They just wanted to give something back to their community to help preserve natural resources.

These boys are a great example of how attitudes are changing toward nature.  They know that if they don’t protect their natural resources, they will lose forever the beautiful olive ridley sea turtle.  This emblematic reptile has been visiting Progreso since ancient times. Their populations have been decimated by human intervention.  These boys are aware that if they are not part of the solution, they are part of the problem.  

The mission of the Corcovado Foundation is to protect wilderness areas and promote environmental education, responsible tourism and community development compatible with the sustainable use of natural resources on the Osa Peninsula and southern Costa Rica.    Help us to keep influencing young minds like Alvaro and Diego, so that changes in behavior can be a natural part of their life.

drawing about nature
drawing about nature

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