Eco-Agriculture Volunteer in Costa Rica (Coffee Farming)
Do you want to dig your hands in rich mountain soil and learn all about sustainable farming practices? Would you like to travel to the tropical country of Costa Rica, learn about the origins of coffee and immerse yourself in local culture?
Costa Rica is a beautiful and naturally rich country, home to over 70,000 coffee plantations that produce a rich and delicious Arabica bean known all over the world. Visit the cooler highlands where the coffee is grown and experience another side of Costa Rica.
Unfortunately, a lot of local coffee farmers are not using sustainable or organic practices, which leads to soil erosion, habitat destruction, and loss of native species. In a tiny country that is home to a large percentage of the world’s biodiversity, unsustainable farming practices can have a major negative impact on the environment.
You can help, learn, and promote sustainable farming by volunteering at a coffee farm in Costa Rica. You’ll work in the beautiful Monteverde Cloud Forest or Brunca region of the Talamanca Mountains and contribute to developing ecological models of coffee production that local farmers can use to help preserve the natural environment.
Do you want to share your passion for sustainability and help the environment? Contact Global Crossroad today to learn more about our eco-agriculture program in Costa Rica!
Volunteer Responsibilities & Impacts
You’ll be working hands-on at a small organic coffee farm with a local community of farmers helping develop a sustainable model for ecological coffee production in Costa Rica.
You’ll learn how to use non-synthetic pesticides, practice crop rotation, and restore native species on part of the land to keep the balance of nature. You will assist with all stages of coffee production right from growing, harvesting and production. You will work in the nursery, weeding, roasting, coffee-picking and packaging.
By volunteering in the eco-agriculture project in Costa Rica, you’ll be learning sustainable farming practices and how to revolutionize the food system in an earth-friendly way. You’ll also make a big impact by paving the way for a better ecological future for Costa Rica, since coffee is big business with nearly 30% of the population working in the industry!
Skills and Qualifications
There are no specific qualifications required to join this unique program, you only need to be passionate about sustainable farming. You will need to be in good physical shape as there is a lot of physical labor involved. You’ll be working in the sun, squatting, standing, lifting, and planting. Be ready to get your hands dirty and dig in wherever it’s needed!
You’ll need to be 18 years of age to volunteer. Volunteers who are at least 16 years old can also volunteer on their own but with parental consent and those below the age of 16 years old need to be accompanied by their parent, guardian or faculty leader if they wish to volunteer.
You won’t need to speak Spanish to join the coffee farm volunteer opportunity in Costa Rica, but it will certainly enrich your time abroad if you can speak a little of the local language. If you want to learn Spanish or improve your skills, we highly recommend you enroll in our Spanish Immersion classes. We offer them while you volunteer, so it’s super convenient for you and a great opportunity!
Each day as a volunteer in Coffee farm volunteering opportunity in Costa Rica will be a fun adventure digging your hands into the dirt and growing the seeds of change for a more ecological future for Costa Rica’s coffee farming industry. You’ll learn so much and make a difference at the same time!
You can expect to volunteer an average of 5 hours per day, Monday-Friday. Your actual hours will vary based on what’s going on from day to day at the project, but here’s a sample schedule to give you an idea of what to expect.
- First Day : On your first day, our in-country coordinator will bring you to the coffee farm and introduce you to the local project staff. You’ll be taken around the farm on a tour and undergo a helpful orientation.
- Orientation: Learn all about the work you’ll be doing on the farm, what the project is about, your schedule, safety protocol, and quickly go over the customs and culture of Costa Rica.
- Weekdays: A typical day volunteering on a coffee farm in Costa Rica might look something like this:
- 7.00 to 7.30 AM: Start your day with a hearty breakfast shared with your fellow volunteers. Many of the foods will be grown on the farm!
- 7.45 AM: Get ready for an exciting day of hard work and learning on the farm, digging your hands into the dirt and implementing organic farming practices.
- 12.00 PM: Break for lunch and use this time to bond with your fellow Costa Rica coffee farm volunteers. Make like-minded friends from around the world!
- 3.00 PM: A nice snack will also be served to you if you’re hungry after all that hard work! - When you’re not volunteering, you’ll be free to enjoy the beautiful natural surroundings, relax, and experience more of Costa Rica!
- 6.45 PM: Enjoy dinner with your fellow volunteers as the day comes to a close. Once again, you’ll be enjoying the fruits of your labor as many of the foods served are grown right on the farm!
Fees & Program Dates
Global Crossroads volunteer programs begin every Monday year-round. We allow flexibility if you have travel constraints. Volunteers can join our programs from 1 week up to 12 weeks.
Global Crossroad is committed to offering the most affordable and high quality Costa Rica volunteer trips. We strive to keep our costs low. The humanitarian side of the business is our passion.
Global Crossroad volunteer opportunity in San Jose, Costa Rica application and registration fee costs US $299. The application fee covers the cost of advertising, program promotion, and office expenses (rent, utilities, and staff salaries in the USA office).
In addition to the application fee, you are required to pay a weekly program fee. You will pay your weekly fee directly to your host family and project (via the country coordinator). This way, the fees that you pay will benefit those who rightfully deserve them, and are not for company profit.
Volunteer Program Fees (US$)
Program fees cover:
- Shared Accommodation with host family
- 2 meals per day (Breakfast & Dinner)
- Airport Pick up
- In-country support
- Program Orientation
- Project Management
- Volunteer Certificate
- Discount for returning volunteers
- Weekly Surcharge
Program fees exclude:
- Miscellaneous personal expenses, soft drinks, food, etc.
- Daily transportation
- Airport return transfer
The Costa Rica volunteer program fees cover expenses from the first day of your program to the last day of your program. If you arrive before the first day of the program or you decide you stay beyond your program’s last day, you will be responsible for any additional expenses.
Accommodation and Meal
While volunteering at a coffee farm in Costa Rica, you will be staying in safe, clean and comfortable accommodations at the project site with a local host family. You’ll share a room with fellow volunteers and be served two healthy meals per day (breakfast and dinner). Staying with a host family will give you a wonderful opportunity to immerse yourself in the local culture.
Free Time and Weekend Exploration
You’ll be volunteering an average of 5 hours per day, so that leaves plenty of free time to enjoy the beautiful country and bond with your fellow volunteers. On the weekends, you can head out and explore more of Costa Rica. Explore the many beautiful beaches and rainforests at a driving distance from the farm.Discover what to do in your free time and weekends in Costa Rica.
Safety and In Country Support
Your safety is our top priority while you are volunteering at an organic coffee farm in Costa Rica. We plan every aspect of your trip, carefully vet all of our partners, provide airport pick-up, and more. You will also have the guidance and support of our talented in-country team.
Volunteer Coffee Farm Costa Rica: FAQs
You’re probably asking yourself a few questions, so we’ve taken the time to put together this list of helpful information to give you the answers you need:
Arrival and Departure
You’ll fly into Juan Santamaria International Airport in San Jose, Costa Rica. Your airport pickup is included in your volunteer fee, and we’ll have someone waiting for you when you land who will take you safely to your accommodations.
When you complete your project, you will need to arrange your own departure transportation as it is not included in your volunteer fee. Just speak to the local project staff if you need advice on booking a taxi to the airport.
You may be eligible for a visa stamp upon your arrival at the airport in San Jose. However, do your research to learn the requirements for your home country before heading out on your Costa Rica coffee farming volunteer experience.
Most volunteers will be eligible for a 90-day tourist visa. You should know you will need to provide proof of onward travel. If you have a round trip ticket, this will serve as all the proof you need. Research the visa requirements at the official Immigration site of Costa Rica:
No one wants to get sick while they travel abroad, so protect yourself by getting vaccinated before you go. Make an appointment with your doctor a few weeks before traveling to get up to date.
You should be up to date on your routine vaccines, as well as Hepatitis A & B and Typhoid. You can also find information on the CDC website.
Why volunteer at a coffee farm in Costa Rica?
Dig your hands into the rich mountain soil
If gardening and farming are your passions, this is the perfect project for you! This is a very hands-on experience, and you’ll be getting down and dirty digging your hands right into the soil to help make things grow. Grab a shovel and dig in!
Learn sustainable farming practices
If you’re looking to learn how to farm or garden without pesticides, and using sustainable and ecological practices, volunteering at a coffee farm in Costa Rica is your chance! Gain hands-on experience with organic practices you can take back home and use throughout the rest of your life!
Promote a more sustainable coffee industry
Coffee is king in Costa Rica, with the government calendar still following the harvest season. A lot of beans are produced each year, and it is incredibly important that future production starts moving to a more ecological model in order to stay sustainable and not damage the ecosystem. Be part of the change that brings this about!
Travel and make a difference
Travel to the beautiful country of Costa Rica and experience this exciting destination while doing your part to make the world a better place. This year, take a vacation that makes a difference.
Contact Global Crossroad today to learn more volunteering at an organic coffee farm!
Other Volunteer Opportunities Available in Costa Rica:
For more information on our exciting programs in Costa Rica, contact us today.
Other Environmental Conservation Programs Worldwide
In order to improve the health of the planet and protect the environment, we organize various ecological conservation projects in many different countries, the most popular of which are listed below:Nepal – Nature Conservation
Ecuador - Galapagos Conservation
Ecuador – Quito Ecological Conservation