The time I spent in Costa Rica in the summer of 2014 was the best experience I have ever had in my life. Not only was I able to explore a new culture and embrace the Costa Rican lifestyle and get some relaxing vacation time, I was able to create positive change not only in the various forms of life in Costa Rica through volunteer projects, but positive changes within myself and the ones who surrounded me through interaction. EDventure International is truly one of the greatest organizations I have ever had the chance to interact with. I think an EDventure is something everyone should do in their lives because they provide it all!
The moments you spend during 3 weeks with people, who at the start are strangers, end up becoming some of the most cherished moments of your life, and by the end of the three weeks, those strangers become some of your greatest friends! Not only are you meeting new people and new lifestyles and learning about people from all over, the two weeks spent volunteering are some of the greatest learning experiences you could possibly imagine. I knew going into it I was going to be saving baby turtles from poachers and helping children have a better learning experience in school, but what I didn’t know was how much these volunteer projects would help me! Yes, I learned a lot about turtles and why we were there to help save them from poachers and I learned about how building lockers and painting schools and teaching children English really shed a bright light upon those children’s learning; but, the main thing I learned was about the lifestyle of these hatchery workers and the lifestyle of these families and their whole view on life. Their view was ‘Pura Vida’, that’s the perfect phrase, and it’s a view on life I now believe needs to be looked up to by the rest of the world.
Not only did I learn a new view on life and how it is practiced, with the EDventure program I was allowed to live and embrace it due to the way the program is designed. It was nice not being tied down to a strict schedule and awesome how the facilitators involved us in our plans and let us help make some of the decisions, it was as if they were apart of the group rather than guiding it which made the whole trip a lot easier especially with Lisa and Jamie being some of the nicest people I have ever met.
The structure of how instead of volunteering at the projects all day, we got to spend 1/2 of the day volunteering and the other 1/2 doing cultural activities and learning all sorts of different facts and customs was spectacular and so unique, something I have never heard of. And it is also why EDventure is the perfect name for such a trip, it is a true Educational Adventure.
I absolutely loved every second I spent with my EDventure group in Costa Rica and I couldn’t be more pleased with the program. The facilitators kept us more than well fed, housed us in best conditions possible, provided great guidance and help, were overly happy and excited as to make for an awesome environment, and were an all around A+ grade organization that I would sign up for another trip again in a heart beat! Thank you so much everyone at EDventure, you honestly make every life you touch smarter, happier, and simply better!