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.
Aug 11, 2015

More turtles to protect than ever before!

Volunteers arriving at the Rio Oro site
Volunteers arriving at the Rio Oro site

With one month of the 2015 season under our belts, we’ve got so many wonderful new experiences to share with our donors. For the first time ever the Corcovado Foundation Sea Turtle Conservation Program has been protecting two major nesting sites for these endangered species on the northern and southern flanks of the Corcovado National Park.

 

At playa Drake our volunteers have helped the local turtle conservation association, ACOTPRO, to build the biggest hatchery to date, with room for 144 nests. At playa Río Oro, our volunteers helped to remove trash from 20km of coastline, ensuring that this precious wilderness remains an idyllic nesting habitat for the sea turtles. They have been rewarded by seeing as many as 20 sea turtles come to nest some nights – many more than we are used to finding in Drake! The season has only just begun too, so it’s very exciting to imagine what it will be like when the nesting activity peaks in September!

 

The program has also welcomed a record number of international volunteers too. Sixty came to volunteer during just the first month and over 120 have signed up for 2015 so far – smashing the previous record of 93 in 2014.

 

The newly expanded program, however, brings a new level of responsibility and new funding needs. While the increase in the number of volunteers has provided the indispensable labor required to protect both beaches, the income generated from their fees does not cover the increased costs of running the program. This year we were fortunate enough to win two grants to cover these costs; by contrast, for 2016 we currently have no funding at all!

 

In order to consolidate our work with the community in Drake Bay and construct a permanent research station at Río Oro we need to raise around $30,000 USD by the end of the year. We are also in need of a vehicle in order to cut down our transportation costs. With this key infrastructure in place, the program would be a position where it could operate without the need for grants in the future, and could guarantee the protection of the sea turtles at these two important nesting beaches for years to come.

 

We are offering our donors a real opportunity this year to make a tangible and permanent contribution to the conservation of sea turtles in the region, and support the sustainable development of the local communities with which they interact.

 

Make a donation today, large or small, and help us to save the sea turtles from extinction!

 

To keep up to date with the daily goings-on at the program, visit: https://www.facebook.com/cfseaturtles, and read our volunteer blog here: http://cfseaturtles.blogspot.com/

 

Thank you for your support!

Volunteers cleaning the beach at Rio Oro
Volunteers cleaning the beach at Rio Oro
Volunteers eating lunch after cleaning the beach
Volunteers eating lunch after cleaning the beach
Jun 24, 2015

Santa Juana Community an amazing experiment

A Unique Adventure Experience: Rural Hospitality

Santa Juanas biodiversity was under threat from a variety of human-related factors, including illegal logging and poaching, unsustainable methods of farming and fishing, the spread of the agricultural frontier, and pollution.

 

With little access to infrastructure and markets, local communities often engage in the activities listed above as a matter of survival. However, these activities have devastating effects on ecosystems; the decline in local populations of wild animals is increasing and dramatic. With no other options, even communities that are aware of the importance of their surroundings ecosystems may not have other options for food or earning income. For this reason, ecotourism is an important tool for providing the basic human needs without destroying the local environment.

Once a dormant community, Santa Juana is now a vibrant little town.  The community was disappearing, young people were migrating looking for economic opportunities and the school barely had any students.   That is no longer the case. 

The creation of the Santa Juana Rural Tourism Program is now changing everything.   We are amazed at the incredible response so far to the new Santa Juana Lodge, represented by Greentqiue Hotels and operated by members of the local community of Santa Juana. So far we have hosted travel agents and customers from around the world at the lodge and Santa Juana Rural Mountain Adventure Tour. Their comments through forums, including Trip Advisor, convey the enjoyment and authenticity of rural hospitality, truly connecting with and about the rural culture of Costa Rica. Known as a popular vacation destination, Costa Rica offers its visitors both natural beauty and cultural experiences, and now the lodge of Santa Juana can participate and generate more awareness to support our conservation programs and employment opportunities.

The rural mountain vacation is a window back in time, off the beaten path for the true adventurist…including specialized groups.  It’s an enlightening travel experience that also benefits Greentique Hotels Carbon Offset initiatives, offering Tree Adoption Certificates to all our guests. So for travelers interested in nature in a serene and authentic farm village setting, without the external distractions of mass tourism, we offer the ideal balance of comfort in harmony with nature, and the good nature of your hosts. It means enhancing the guest immersion into the people and rural culture discovering reasons for the “Pura Vida” positive attitude of Ticos. Guest reviews highlight the traditional meals, prepared with local ingredients and family recipes, served in the rancho El Mirador, overlooking the panoramic Pacific coastline of Manuel Antonio National Park…describing it all as, ” heaven on earth”!

We look forward to sharing more of our programs of exceptional Costa Rica experiences while respecting the very nature we are committed to help protect and enhancing with the community while still respecting the way of life of Santa Juana, Costa Rica.

May 26, 2015

Love, respect, tolerance, appreciation and empathy

children making things with recycling materials
children making things with recycling materials

Our program, “Creating the Environmental Leaders of the New Millenium in Osa”, aims to change children’s attitude toward nature and empower them to lead the way for sustainable development thru Environmental Education (EE).   

EE promotes change in the attitude of individuals and communities to a society that is knowledgeable of the environment and its associated problems.  They become aware of the solutions to these problems and are motivated to solve them.  

Children will need to influence their parents and teach them new ways of coexisting with nature.  This is true in Osa, where the local way of life for decades has traditionally been based on destructive activities such as illegal hunting and logging.    

The United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organization (UNESCO) states that EE is vital in imparting an inherent respect for nature amongst society and in enhancing public environmental awareness.

Our environmental educators are biologists committed to reaching out to children in the most respectful and fun way possible.  In exchange, they get lots of love, laughter and stories from the children.  These stories inspire them every day to continue this endless process of changing attitudes toward their environment, not only toward nature but also toward their peers.  Love, respect, tolerance, appreciation and empathy are feelings you can have towards your siblings, your neighbors, a tree or a snake.

Some of the stories they have shared with us show us how children change their attitude.  For instance, a couple of weeks ago, during one of the children’s group meetings,  Helena our environmental educator proposed the idea of playing Secret Santa among the 11 children that are part of the group, and making all the gifts with recycled materials.  The kids engaged immediately, looking for recyclable waste that could be used to make their gifts.  After their snack time, a cream cheese plastic cup was available and all the kids jumped to get it as for them it was a wonderful treasure.    Some people’s waste is other people treasure they say.

Another endearing story happened not too long ago, when some members of this group found a land turtle crossing the road.  After picking it up they became worried and began looking for Helena  seeking advice.  What should we do?  What if a car runs it over?  What if a dog gets it?   A few years before, they wouldn’t have cared, they might have even hurt the turtle just for the fun of it, but now they love and respect fauna.  And they are starting to lead by their example.

Help us maintain our efforts! 

children playing
children playing
working together
working together

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