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The Westcoast Connection Blog

Life Changing Experiences

Hola desde la playa! – Costa Rica Community Service

Hola desde la playa!
Here’s a quick look at our last few days.
Thursday was our second day of community service and it took place in Santa Ana, a rural community that wanted to add an English classroom to their school.  When we arrived, the Minister of Public Education was there to break ground with us.  We worked hard along with some of the kids from the school to clear the area of debris and materials and we also dug three-foot holes for posts.  Even though it was a day of hard labor, the trip members were so helpful, polite and talkative. After lunch, Gaby, Grace and Eliana led the girls in great conversations while the boys played some serious futbol.  When we got back to the hotel we had some pool time followed by a delicious dinner at a local rotisserie chicken restaurant.  Once we were back at the hotel we debriefed about the day, comparing the needs from the day before in La Carpio with this community in Santa Ana.  Then we finished the day on a high note with a private Karaoke session at the hotel.  Brandi was the limbo queen while Brooke and David serenaded us with multiple chart toppers!
Day five, besides being Canada Day for the trip leaders, was also a full day of service.  We met about 20 kids from La Carpio at a huge park for a day of camp activities.  The park was complete with a pool, soccer field and picnic areas.  The kids were really excited to have a day trip outside of their neighborhood and for the pool, something they don’t normally have access to.  We played soccer, did arts and crafts, splashed around in the pool and made lots of new friends.  We finished off the day by leaving each child with some donations. They all left with huge smiles, and we were glad to be a part of their fun day.  Afterwards we headed back to the hotel to get cleaned up before dinner where we had some great real fruit milkshakes! After dinner we headed to Mini-Putt where Melony got three hole in ones!
The next day, we left our home at La Condesa Hotel and headed northwest through four provinces until we arrived in Tamarindo.  The bus ride had some great views and good stops for souvenirs and snacks along the way.  We arrived at Tamarindo beach in time for lunch on a great patio on the main strip.  After lunch we took a crack at surfing in the Pacific.  We had a two-hour lesson where Hannah, Jake and Courtney all showed us their natural ability!  After a great afternoon at the beach we checked into Cabinas Insolinas with two amazing outdoor pools at its centre.  We fit in a quick swim at our new hotel and then got cleaned up for dinner.  Our dinner was ‘al aire libre’ and afterwards we made a stop at a delicious gelato place where we got flavors like coffee, coconut and nutella!
We soon have our last day of community service, where we’ll be working at a local health centre and painting.  After putting in some hard labor we plan on hitting the beach; the water was so great today and we can’t wait to get back.  Next time you hear from us, our trip will be coming to a close, but before then we’ll be having lots more fun and adventure… stay tuned!
Pura Vida,

The Westcoast Blogger