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A Unique Educator Retreat in the Rainforests of Costa Rica

(July 22-28, 2024)


From the steep decline of the world’s animal and insect populations to the melting of glaciers at the poles to the increase in unstable weather patterns on every continent, the global environmental crisis is a constant and increasing threat, not only to our students’ future, but also to their mental health and wellbeing today. Therefore, it is essential for educators to think about how we can help young people navigate these dangerous times.


Matthew Cook, a US university-trained development economist and the owner/operator of Latin American Service Expeditions, and Bernarda Morales, Indigenous elder of the Bribri community of Yorkin and founder of the Bribri ecotourism association, STIBRAWPA, will lead participants on a unique journey deep into the heart of the Costa Rican rainforest.  On this trip we will explore the problems posed by global climate change and how we can help our students develop the cognitive and emotional tools necessary to face our new climate reality with resilience, courage, and hope.


The primary goal of the retreat is to provide educators with a methodology to aid students in

  • comprehending the global nature of the climate crisis,

  • developing empathy and solidarity for others,

  • responding to the impacts of climate change on their lives and communities.


At the end of the retreat, you will have strategies in hand to convert your students’ legitimate concerns and fears about climate change into concrete action, thereby providing important support for their mental health and emotional well-being.


This is an experiential education trip, so during our time in the village of Yorkin, we will experience what it means to live life within planetary ecological limits by sharing with the Bribri people for whom consuming “stuff” has always been secondary to other human pursuits.  By combining both Indigenous and mainstream economic perspectives on social development, Matt and Bernarda will provide tools and strategies to assist educators in teaching students about climate change in a way that will help them live happier lives and adapt to the environmental and social disruptions that are coming.


Nowhere on Earth matches the rich biological diversity of the tropical rainforest, and on our journey, we will also experience all of the wonder and beauty of this endangered and fascinating ecosystem. Join us on this important and immersive trip to the rainforest!


Our next retreat is July 22-28, 2024. And the fee for the 7 day retreat is reasonably priced at USD$1250, not including airfare. For any group of at least 5 people we can generally customize a trip to run for the dates that are most convenient for you. We understand how essential and urgent this topic is for educators, so we strive to keep the fee down and our dates flexible.

Please contact us for a sample itinerary.

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