Posted: July 31, 2017
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Summer II: Pura Vida!

Costa Rica

Just hanging out on the porch of the dormitory overlooking the beautiful Center

First week down and this beautiful, humble center already feels like home. The energy that El Centro emanates offers a welcoming atmosphere on the level of academic, spiritual and social growth. As students here, we are gifted with the opportunity to capitalize on the knowledge of the esteemed professors and staff, develop life skills through our daily pandillas (chores), and understand deeper the fascinating culture and the busy biodiversity that inhabits this rich land.

Coffee plants on the LIFE farm in Monteverde

Our fourth day here it was already time for our first immersive experience on this SFS program. We took a field trip up to the breathtaking mountain oasis in the clouds, Monteverde. Here we were blessed with a tour of LIFE farm, a sustainable coffee farm. Guillermo, the owner of the farm offered some very inspiring and informative insight on the reality of sustainability and the importance sustainable agriculture and its role in ensuring the health of the environment. Guillermo said that his farm actually wasn’t sustainable. This made most of us turn our heads in confusion, but what he meant was that no farm or country is really sustainable because sustainability is a wholistic concept that involves the Earth as a whole. Every action we do affects the systems of the Earth. If our neighbors are not sustainable than neither are we. We must approach sustainability with a goal of ensuring that our own practices are environmentally conscious and also promote the people and organizations around us to do the same.

Guillermo preaching his wisdom and giving us the tour of the LIFE coffee farm

The start of the second week found us involving ourselves in the community with three different outreach projects. These included playing bingo and interacting with the elderly at a local nursing home, feeding turtles and cleaning their living spaces, and planting trees to benefit the aquafer which supplies Atenas.

Planting trees up in the high hills of Atenas on an outreach project

Pura Vida! Peace and love from summer session 2!

Continental divide of Costa Rica, at the Monteverde Cloud Forest Reserve

→ Sustainable Development Studies in Costa Rica

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