Volunteer Work, Education / Teaching, Child Care
flexible start and end dates, year round, except during the school holidays from December to the end of February, the first two weeks of July as well as the Easter week.
Our partner schools in Costa Rica are usually flexible with work schedules, allowing participants to work full-time or part-time. Although volunteers from abroad are not required to have special skills or a professional background in education, they need to be able to work independently and proactively, demonstrating extensive initiative and creativity.
Elementary schools in Costa Rica provide education for children between the ages of 5 to 12. Some of them also receive younger children in an on-site kindergarten and pre-kindergarten facility. The number of children varies according to each school and can be between 100 and 650 children.
Children are taught the regular school subjects (math, geography, and science, reading and writing) as well as sports, arts, music and computer lessons. In addition, they have their foreign language class, which is English in most cases.
Children attending public elementary schools come from low-income families. The schools receive an annual budget from the government, and the parent’s only pay for certain school materials and a low tuition fee.
The schools where we place our volunteers in Costa Rica are usually very flexible in terms of working hours. Participants are free to choose whether they want to work full-time or part-time. However, when volunteering in public schools in Costa Rica, it is very important that you be aware of your responsibilities. Please always keep in mind that as a volunteer you are a role model for the children. It is important that the chosen schedule is adhered to, because both the students and the teachers count on your presence.
You do not require any special previous knowledge for your voluntary service as an assistant teacher. However, you should be able to work independently and responsibly, as well as bring a dose of creativity, patience, tolerance and empathy.
It is welcome if the volunteers bring their own skills into the work. Ideas and suggestions are welcome and can be discussed with the supervisor on site.
Volunteer work for this project may include, but is not limited to, the following tasks and responsibilities:
- Teaching arts and crafts
- Teaching languages, especially English
- Teaching computer skills
- Preparing extra materials for the lessons
- Organizing games and recreational activities
- Playing sports and outdoor games
- Helping out with light chores necessary for the day-to-day operation of the schools
- Helping with the improvement and adornment of the facilities
- Providing warm and caring attention to the children
- Assisting the teachers in charge of the children with different tasks
Note: The tasks may vary. They depend on factors such as number of volunteers, weather, season, current needs of the project, as well as self-motivation. Not every volunteer may be fully involved in all these tasks.
An important aspect of our volunteer work programs in Costa Rica is a nice and safe living environment.
Our work abroad programs aim to give volunteers the opportunity to completely immerse themselves in the Costa Rican culture, so that they get the most out of their stay in this amazing country.
We believe that you only get to know a country when you are part of the culture, experiencing the country off the beaten path. This is why we place our volunteers in Costa Rican homestays. You will have a single room available for you, and two meals per day (breakfast and dinner) are included. Bathrooms and common areas are usually shared. Living in a local household is a great way to also practice your Spanish, which will improve every day.
Costa Rica's capital San José located in the heart of this small country. From there, you can reach all of Costa Rica’s attractions in a few hours, some natural beauties like the Irazu volcano and several national parks are even right at the doorstep!
With around 340,000 inhabitants, San José itself is not very large, but due to its role as the capital and its central location, it is the country's economic, political and cultural center. The inhabitants call themselves "Josefinos" and most are descendants of Italian or Spanish immigrants. These influences are reflected in the architecture and cityscape, which seem very Mediterranean.
San José is a pretty town with attractive theaters, museums, art galleries, cultural events – and not at last a lively nightlife. Colorful markets invite you to stroll and shop and on nice places you can relax and watch the hustle and bustle.
As in all of Costa Rica, there are hardly any "real" addresses in the capital - street signs are usually not found, just like house numbers. Addresses are rather descriptions, like: Name of the district, if available, 200m south of the red church, the house with the green door. Or: Fourth house next to the gas station behind the supermarket. Sounds adventurous? But it works!
Spanish at communication level. For optimal preparation for your volunteer work in Costa Rica, we advise you to take a Spanish course before the program starts. This gives you the opportunity to slowly get used to the language, culture and mentality.
Pre-departure and in-country support
Before arrival, our experienced team is at your disposal to support you during the booking process and travel planning. With the booking confirmation you will get our 24-hour emergency number, so that you can reach us around the clock in an emergency, 7 days a week.
In addition to the support from our office, you will be supported by our partner organization on site. Our volunteers have access to our so-called volunteer center. There you will always find a contact person and can surf the Internet for free, take part in cultural activities such as dance and cooking lessons and Spanish conversation workshops.
In the Volunteer Center, the volunteers receive all the information they need about their project and working hours. Our local volunteer coordinators will be happy to answer any questions you might have.
On the first day of volunteering, the volunteers are welcomed in the Volunteer Center and get further program information. They will then be accompanied to their volunteer position and introduced to the project team there.
Costs & Services
Our volunteer project in an Elementary School in Costa Rica includes:
- Single room in Homestay
- Breakfast, dinner
- Laundry service once a week
- Airport pick-up in San José
- Professional English-speaking advice
- Translation of your application documents
- Volunteer Work Placement in Costa Rica
- English-speaking in-country support
- Welcome meeting
- Escort to the volunteer project on the first day
- Handbook Costa Rica
- Intercultural guideline
- 24/7 emergency number
- Information about suitable travel insurance
- Certificate of participation
Application fee: US$ 150
Program fee: US$ 760 (minimum stay 2 weeks)
Each additional week: US$ 220
Additionally, you can book:
Our tips (experience more + see more = save $$)
Is it difficult for you to decide between the many great projects? You want to see and experience as much as possible during your stay in Latin America? Then build your own itinerary - experience more & see more! Our program combination makes it possible!
All our stay abroad programs can be combined with each other: So, you can combine different volunteer projects in the same country or in different countries, or you mix Working Holiday with volunteer work or Farm Stay with Working Holiday ...and so on …
Your creativity knows no limits. The longer your stay abroad in Latin America, the greater the discount you get from South America Inside. Below you can see how much you can save:
Note: Language courses are excluded from this promotion. These discounts can not be combined with other promotions.
If you need assistance in putting together your personal experience abroad, then please contact us. Our experienced staff will help you to set up your tailor-made stay abroad.