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Costa Rica Jungle Teaching

  • In Brief
  • The Project
  • What to Expect
  • Reviews
  • Gallery
  • Extras
  • Dates & Costs
  • Apply
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Get Project Info

Download a PDF with details of this project for you to keep or print out.

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Get Country Info

Download a PDF with details about Costa Rica for you to keep or print out

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How To Apply

Simply fill in our no-obligation application form and we will get back to you with full project details

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TEFL Qualification

Earn your Teaching English as a Foreign Language certificate, and get your foot on the career ladder.


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Find out more about Costa Rica

Start your adventure now by reading our country guide for Costa Rica!


Frontier Group Project

Working in collaboration with institutions and NGOs with the country, projects are research-based, creating sustainable and biodiverse programmes.

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Located in Central America, Costa Rica is nestled between the Caribbean Sea and the Pacific Ocean and is home to over 500,000 different species of animals, giving it the highest species density of any country in the world. Over 50% of species found in the country call the Osa Peninsula home, meaning this project is located in the most biodiverse region of one of the most biodiverse countries on the globe – truly a hotspot within a hotspot! Due to the remote location, there is a lack of resources for teaching and learning English and this is a good opportunity for you to step in and help the jungle community!

 

The camp itself is based amongst dense tropical forest on the edge of Corcovado National Park, close to the shores of the Pacific Ocean. Teaching volunteers will stay on the same camp as research volunteers who live and work with other enthusiastic and energetic conservationists, working together to carry out critical surveys and data collection activities. As a Teaching volunteer, you will support a small primary school which is located very close to our camp. You will be offering support to children learning English and supporting them with other aspects of their lives and education. The school staff are also extremely keen to develop their English teaching curriculum and you will also provide English lessons to local adults to increase the positive impact of language education on the community of the region.

 

    

  

 

PROJECT HIGHLIGHTS

  • Discover a land of intense beauty and colourful culture
  • Earn your TEFL certificate for free if you complete 20  teaching hours
  • Help improve the lives of local children and communities
  • Awaken your creativity & initiative as you immerse yourself in local culture

 

PROJECT REQUIREMENTS

  • Basic Spanish recommended, but not compulsory
  • A criminal background check (DBS check if in UK)
  • CV
Airport Pickup Camping Community Emergency Ground Transport Meals Teaching Terrestrial Qualification Free Time
FAST FACTS
Location Costa Rica
Activities Help to teach English
Get involved in extracurricular activities
Support community development activities
Transport Pick-up from Puerto Jimenez weekly on Monday before 12:00pm. pick-ups available at all other times for $40
Accommodation

 Frontier forest research station in communal eco-cabins


WHAT'S INCLUDED
Before you go Pre-departure support 
Travel & medical advice & documentation
Advice on visas and equipment
Discounted medical kit
Free Frontier t-shirt (UK & US)
Free Frontier TEFL Certification if you complete necessary teaching hours
UK residential briefing weekend including food, accommodation and training (extra cost applies)
In-country Accommodation
3 meals daily (while on project)
Airport pickup, Monday before 12pm
Project orientation and training
In-country emergency support
24 hour international HQ back-up

WHAT DOES THE PROJECT DO?

The project aims to help improve the social and economic well-being of some of the poorest children in various communities, within outlying areas of the Osa Peninsula. The number of people living below the poverty line in Costa Rica is on the decline in recent years, though individuals and communities still face barriers to full participation in economic activities which can help to improve their well-beings. You will contribute to the improvement of the communities’ future by helping to provide basic education and conversational English. You will also be playing games with children in a primary school located within the jungle community. The project will allow you to not only contribute towards the well-being of underprivileged children, but also quickly improve your Spanish language skills, through interacting with the local community members and making new friends and exploring the all that the region of Costa Rica has to offer!

WHAT WILL I BE DOING?

Your work schedule will be challenging, varied and sometimes unpredictable but always enjoyable, as you embark on your placement within a primary school located in the jungle community. There are a range of activities taking place and you will finalise your schedule on arrival based upon local needs and duration of your stay. Whatever your schedule you will engage fully with local children, local teacher and community, using your creativity and initiative to assist in the activities of the project.

You will benefit in terms of your personal and professional experience and will be encouraged to formulate ideas and develop your teaching skills and techniques. You will teach English to a small class of children for at least an hour per day and you will also have the opportunity to provide English support to the teaching staff. The camp being located in communal eco-lodges, another activity for you to get involved in is planning English lessons for the lodge staff. This would empower them with great skills to improve their living conditions. Your level of involvement will obviously depend on the length of your stay as well as your existing skills and qualifications.

WHAT HAPPENS WHEN I ARRIVE?

If you arrive on a Monday before 12:00pm, you will be greeted at Puerto Jimenez airport or bus station by a Frontier staff member and escorted by local bus to the project camp. If arriving after 12:00pm on a Monday or at any time on any other day, a pick-up can be arranged for an additional $40.

 

 

WHERE WILL I BE STAYING?

Life on camp is a unique experience! You will be staying in simple, shared, mixed-sex eco-cabins amidst the jungles near to Carate, where the school is located. This is a jungle research camp, so a mosquito net is an absolute must! We have tried to keep the camp in harmony with its pristine surroundings, so conditions are simple, environmentally friendly and comfortable.

The camp is situated about 5 minutes walk from Playa Carate, a beach which stretches for over 20 miles all the way into Corcovado National Park. There are cool, refreshing showers and toilets on camp too. You’ll be feeling at one with the jungle before you know it!

 

WHAT WILL I BE EATING?

We feel it is very important to support the local economy, so most of our supplies are sourced locally. This means we do not have access to everyone’s preferred foods and much of what we eat is seasonal and fresh. Costa Rican food is delicious, with a focus on rice, beans and good quality fruit and vegetables. 

Cooking and cleaning are carried out communally on a rotational basis, so everybody will be responsible for preparing meals. You will have the opportunity to learn how to cook the national staple food, gallo pinto, consisting of fried rice and black beans. Another dish that is simple to prepare with local ingredients and is often eaten on camp is light and crispy tortillas stuffed with refried beans and vegetables.

There are no refrigeration facilities for meat, fish and dairy, so the team takes the environmentally friendly option of vegetarianism during their time on project. If this sounds worrying to you, not to worry, as volunteers regularly make delicious comfort foods such as pizza, falafel-style burgers, curries with homemade chapattis and ginger and cinnamon cakes to name but a few. Get creative! There is also powdered milk to satisfy you avid tea-drinkers. 

Much of the fresh water in the streams surrounding the camp and on the peninsula is safe to drink and it’s important to remember to keep hydrated. Just be sure to check with staff first.

Costa Rica is also world famous for its coffee and it represents the country’s biggest export, so coffee lovers will have plenty of opportunities to get their hands on some. Luxuries like chocolate and packet soup are available in the town nearby, but it is worth bringing some of your favourite treats out with you as well as any herbs or spices. It is recommended that you buy snacks when in town (cereal bars, biscuits etc) for mid-morning sugar dips or to give you energy on long treks.

Costa Rica Jungle Teaching!  | 7 Jan 2017
I’ve had an amazing 6 weeks. The staff were really welcoming and helped me settle in quickl...

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TAKE ME BACK!  | 13 Nov 2016
Have had a fantastic time on the teaching project based at the Frontier camp in Carate! Had an am...

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I love teaching!  | 11 May 2015
I can't even describe the experience I had with Frontier! It's really best if you go see ...

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ADDITIONAL OPPORTUNITIES

Costa Rica provides everything you could ever desire for an action packed and eye opening gap year or eco break. You may wish to explore some of the activities and unforgettable sights that are on offer here whether it is in your spare time, or even in a few extra days spent in this spectacular country at the beginning or end of the project. There are so many possibilities to explore – here are just a few suggestions! Try white water rafting, river kayaking, or even ocean kayaking – all activities that Costa Rica is famous for whether you are an expert or a compete novice.

If you have a head for heights see the landscape stretch out beneath you from above with a canopy tree top tour, or even an aerial tram! Other adventure activities that are on offer include biking, hiking, snorkelling and even bungee jumping! For something more sedate, there are butterfly and insect farms – fascinating for those with an interest in the natural world. The Costa Rica camp is also close to the border with Panama so you could always add another country onto your list by heading to this fascinating country too.

Alternatively you may wish to visit the Frontier house or local hostel in Puerto Jimenez ($7.50 per day, food not included). Costa Rica really does have something for everyone – you will never be short of ways to enjoy your spare time!

* Please note that you will need to cover your own costs for extra activities.

Kayaking

Learn more about one of the most biologically intense places on earth as you explore solitary beaches, beautiful rivers, mountains, waterfalls, farms and amazing diversity of wildlife on a guided kayak tour. You will have the unique opportunity to explore the mangroves from the water, and then paddle towards the sea where you may encounter dolphins, sea turtles, fish and ocean birds. You can kayak individually, in a group or with a guide who will teach you more about the incredible mangrove and coastal environment of Costa Rica.

Wildlife Sanctuary

Visit this remote wildlife sanctuary which is providing wildlife rescue and rehabilitation for orphaned, injured and displaced animals indigenous to south Costa Rica. The sanctuary promote conservation through education and community involvement and work promote the maintenance of natural biodiversity. The sanctuary run a public education programme and you have the opportunity to visit the organisation for a day to see the animals, meet and chat with staff and walk around 700 acres of local forest land.

Modern conveniences

 

Puerto Jimenez - 1 hour collectivo from camp at own cost

  • Banks / ATMs; Banco Nacional and Banco de Costa Rica
  • Bar / cafe
  • Hotels and hostels
  • Internet cafe
  • Medical clinic
  • Souvenir shop
  • Supermarket
  • Traditional markets and cafes
  • Western style restaurants

COSTS

1 week US$ 670

2 weeks US$ 1,010

3 weeks US$ 1,265

4 weeks US$ 1,435

5 weeks US$ 1,605

6 weeks US$ 1,860

7 weeks US$ 2,115

8 weeks US$ 2,370

9 weeks US$ 2,625

10 weeks US$ 2,880

20 weeks US$ 5,090

Extra week US$ 255

DEPARTURE DATES

Every Monday

DURATION

You can join this project for a minimum of 1 week

WHAT'S INCLUDED

Before you go

  • Pre-departure support & documentation
  • Travel advice & documentation
  • Kit advice
  • Discounted medical kit
  • Free Frontier t-shirt (UK & US)
  • UK residential briefing weekend including food, accommodation and training (extra cost applies)

In-country

  • Accommodation
  • 3 meals daily (while on project)
  • Project orientation and training 
  • Airport pick-up, Mondays before 12:00pm
  • In-country emergency support
  • 24-hour international HQ backup
  • Free Frontier TEFL certification if you complete 20 plus teaching hours

AIRPORT INFORMATION

Nearest airport(s): Puerto Jimenez (PJM), San Jose Juan Santamaria Apt (SJO)

WHAT'S NOT INCLUDED

Flights

Flights are not included in our project costs. However, Frontier have partnered with an experienced and professional team of travel experts to help our volunteers find the best flight deals for their trips with Frontier. This travel specialist operates in the tailor-made, long haul multi-stop travel market, arranging complex airfares and transfers for independent travellers. They provide expertise, security and a vast product range along with a Travel Butler service which is a single point of contact and support whilst you are overseas.

We recommend that you obtain a quote using the following contact details rather than book online, as our partner will offer you the most competitive fares. To receive your quote or to seek any advice for your flights, please contact Frontier’s dedicated team of travel experts on 0800 082 9994 (or +44 800 082 9994 outside the UK) or email frontier@flightcentre.co.uk .

Visas

For fast, efficient and up-to-date visa advice please contact our recommended visa consultancy partner:

Depending on your destination country and your country of origin, you might require a visa. Please see the appropriate country consular website for details or contact our affiliate visa consultancy service. Please note that your visa will usually start on the date that you enter the destination country regardless of when it was issued. Please check with the relevant embassy or high commission. If you are purchasing your visa or paying entry/exit fees in-country you will probably need to pay in US Dollars. If you have any questions please consult the relevant embassy or high commission. Please check the visa information regularly, as changes often happen without warning.

Insurance

You'll need to buy appropriate travel insurance covering your participation on the project. You won't be able to go without the right travel insurance so double check to avoid disappointment. Please make sure that you're covered for the whole duration of your trip – from the day you leave the UK to the day you return. It's also best to get your travel insurance at the same time as paying the deposit for your project. Depending on your policy, this will cover you for any unexpected cancellations.

Your insurance should include the following:

  • Medical cover, including medical emergencies and medical evacuations (up to USD$3,000,000 / GBP£2,000,000);
  • Personal liability (up to USD$1,500,000 / GBP£1,000,000);
  • Cancellation and curtailment of your trip (up to the value of your project contribution).

If you are going to be scuba diving you should get coverage for scuba diving up to 30m, including hyperbaric therapy treatment (unlimited). You should consider obtaining insurance to cover you for any additional activities which you plan to do during, before, or after your Frontier project. We recommend that you obtain cover for your baggage and personal effects.


LEGAL STATEMENT
Frontier Partner Projects and Frontier group projects are run in partnership with in-country NGOs, small community based organisations, local research institutes, academic organisations and conservation agencies. Project descriptions and information are supplied directly by our partners or field staff and are accurate at time of publishing.

We aim to keep information up to date and accurate, however, the nature of our projects and in particular the fact that they are constantly evolving and developing in response to changing needs means that project activities, travel schedules, tour itineraries and daily timetables can change overnight and without notice.

To apply for this project, or to register your interest, just click on the orange "Apply Now!" button at the top of the menu. Fill out and submit a short application form and then one of our advisers will give you a call back to answer any questions and to progress your application if you wish to continue.

There is no obligation when making an application, and you do not need to pay anything at this point.