Volunteer work in the rain forest of Costa Rica

The Work with Nature foundation strongly believes in an integral approach for the protection of the rainforest. We aim to buy and protect land, conduct scientific research, cooperate with the locals and live in a sustainable manner in the tropics. As a volunteer, you will assist in all possible ways. The activities are diverse. You will learn a lot, and you will help protect and maintain the rainforest. At the same time, we hope to learn from you as well. As a volunteer, you will be part of our team. Everybody will to contribute, to create a durable project in an amazing environment.

The goal

By means of our research center, located in the reserve, we create a place where humans and nature can live hand in hand: cooperation. Our name is Work with Nature for a reason! Our main goal is to live in and with nature without damaging it. Therefore, we will provide ourselves with electricity and water, grow our own crops, using durable and environmentally friendly materials and we will handle our own garbage in a conscious manner. Profits made by the foundation will be used to buy more endangered parts of the rainforest. Our presence in the reserve will prevent illegal logging. Scientific research will help us to find out the natural values of our surroundings. We will support local workers with a fair salary and show them that nature can be valuable.

Activities of our volunteers

A large organic garden based on permaculture

We have access to multiple hectares of land we will use to construct an organic garden existing of vegetables, fruits and flowers. We will arrange our garden according to the ideas of permaculture: a sustainable arrangement in which you work together with nature. This way, different crops are grown in clusters, space is used efficiently, no pesticides are used and nothing is being thrown away. You will learn the principles of permaculture and help create and maintain the garden. And obviously you will also get the opportunity to taste what is being harvested.

Support for scientific research

With the help of students, interns and scientists, we will map out the biodiversity in our project area. We mainly focus on the diversity of mammals in our reserve, the surrounding forests and Barbilla National Park. The researchers, accompanied by a guide, will go into the rainforest to collect and analyse data. Some of them can use some help with the work they are doing. You have the possibility to learn from these researchers and the work they do. Furthermore, you will experience exciting (though often also toilsome) excursions in the jungle.


In the past, multiple hectares have been deforested in our reserve as well. Obviously we will reforest these parts again. We do research to determine which tree species are most suitable to get back to the original state of these parcels. We grow the trees from seeds, under a custom made roof and plant these following protocols that have proven to work. After that, we will attend to the development of the forest and the diversity of species. As a volunteer, you will help the reforestation, monitor the germinated sprouts and tracking the development.


We want to make our reserve available for visitors by creating several pathways. Along these routes, we will put up information signs, so everyone interested can learn more about nature we are protecting. As a volunteer you will help create these paths, together with a local worker who knows the environment.

Your own contribution

Beside these activities, there might be things you would like to do for yourself. For example: you are a videographer and you want to document the reserve and its activities. Or, you have experience working in a hotel and you see possibilities to improve the project. You have a specific plan? Let us know. All input is valuable.

Residence and cost


You will reside in the research center, or in a small village nearby called San Miguel. You have a bedroom and restroom you will share with other visitors. Meals will be served three times a day. As a volunteer, you will be occupied for 4-6 hours per day with one or multiply activities. There will always be someone around to speak to, and to ensure your safety in the area.


You will receive full pension (3 meals daily), professional guidance and an amazing experience for EUR. 35,- a night.

Sign up or more information

For more information about volunteer work or reservations, please contact us by this contact form.

Want to know more about the Dutch foundation Work with Nature? Please go to: