Costa Rica provides a rich living laboratory for understanding the relationship between people, land and food
on international national, regional and local scales. It is a small
county that possesses an impressive spectrum of approaches to natural resource conservation and food production, some of which are best practice models of sustainable development.
Seeing first hand, and participating in, activities designed to produce food to meet present needs and also preserve the natural resources base upon which food production depends
provides a powerful learning opportunity for "foodies", "conservationists" and those
generally concerned about how to strike a balance between economic development and
Duffy's background allows her to expertly guide your service
opportunity in Costa Rica. In addition to her background related to
conservation and agriculture, she has a 25 year connection
to Costa Rica (especially the Perez Zeledon region) having served as a
Peace Corps Volunteer, done academic
research and worked with small scale farmers there.
Together with her
Costa Rican colleagues including agriculture professionals, conservation professionals, farmers and
business owners, she provides visitors with access to people and
places that aren't readily available to tourists.
Guided trips to Costa Rica are offered twice a year in June/July and in December/January. Each trip is customized to the specific goals, interests, and
schedules of the participant group pivoting from the San Isidro de El General region in the
Southern Pacific Zone of the county. Customized trips can also be arranged for individuals upon request.
• Learn about the history, economy, ecosystems flora and fauna, and culture of Costa Rica
• Learn how different foods are grown, processed and distributed
• Learn about the various ecosystems and habitats ranging from primary forest to mangroves
• Visit biological preserves, watershed conservation, permaculture and ecotourism projects
• Visit traditional, large-scale agricultural operations producing pineapple, palm oil, sugar cane, cattle, and coffee
Visit small scale farms and organic farms producing vegetables, coffee,
wine, and cheese, greenhouses, and aquaculture projects
• Visit community development projects
• Visit farmers markets
Participate in service activities throughout the visit ranging from
trail maintenance for ecotourism projects to providing operations,
business and marketing expertise to small scale farmers and business
owners• Pre-departure orientation, coaching session and frequent learning check-ins, and
post-trip coaching session with Dr. Duffy
Visits to beaches, hot springs, indigenous communities, volcanoes and horseback rides in
the forest, hikes, dancing, massages and manicures/pedicures can be arranged. Spanish language instruction can be a part of your program, if desired.
to and from the airport in San Jose to San Isidro de El General can be
arranged. Lodging options include homestays and hotels. Enjoying traditional foods is a daily delight.
addition to learning, serving and enjoying Costa Rica, participants
provide income to small scale farmers and rural residents by visiting
their communities, farms and homes.