GoEco

GoEco

About

GoEco is a leading eco-tourism company with a varied selection of affordable volunteer projects abroad. We act as a gateway to over 150 extraordinary community, wildlife and environmental initiatives all over the world thanks to our great partnerships. Join one of our rewarding projects and become a part of the global volunteer movement!

Reviews

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Amalia
5/5
Yes, I recommend this program

Amazing Tropical Volunteering

The program is very well structured with enough room for spontaneity. The support before arriving there is really helpful and once you are there the local team and goeco take great care to make sure you are having a good experience. I loved the project and the interaction i had with sea turtles, I could work so closely to them and truly learn new things. To top it all up, the staff and other volunteers were awesome so managed to make everything so fun, not just volunteering but also hosting parties, taking time to explore and doing weekend trips!

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Rebeccah
5/5
Yes, I recommend this program

Great Experience!

Volunteering at the Costa Rica Animal Rescue Center was the most fun I’ve ever had. I got to spend everyday feeding animals I’ve never heard of until I had arrived. And the other people I worked with were so kind and fun. And almost all of the volunteers were 18-25 years old. The center helped organize trips for us to go out every week (waterfalls, volcanoes, beaches). So grateful!!!
The accommodations were very basic. I would recommend this trip for female travelers as well since 80% of the volunteers were women at the time.

Pros
  • Fun
  • Animal care
  • Wifi
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yael
4/5
Yes, I recommend this program

Costa Rica Animal Shelter

the whoe stay was very unique. the young group of volunteers with us and the staff were truely amazing, and exteremly proffassional.
gave me and the griend that was traveling with me a chance to really get to know the colture, the vibe, and of-course the animals of Costa Rica up close.
i wouldnt recommend more than a week's satey, if you dont have much time to travle in Costa Rica.
would probably do it again, if I ever come back (and I do hope I will...)
all in all, great expirience!

PURA VIDA

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Steve
5/5
Yes, I recommend this program

Belize Mini Private Island Diving & Marine Conservation

You live on a small private island (size of a football field) and dive 3time/day. Great place to learn and get certified or hone in on your skills. You can get your open water or go all the way to master diver.
The diving staff are awesome, very knowledgeable and the focus is to keep you safe and make sure you have a great time. After 2 weeks you will become a pro diver.
We hunt lionfish (invasive) and surveyed for conch and lobster. While diving I have seen turtles, sharks, dolphins, a manatee, and a variety of marine life. I even saw two turtles come up at night to lay eggs.
You spend your rest time play volleyball, paddle boarding, snorkeling, swimming, laying in a hammock, or play card games. There is no internet/wifi which means you spend more time interacting and bonding with others.
The island has it own chef which create delicious and healthy meals. They accommodate to all dietary needs. If you catch enough lionfish they will make ceviche, fish burgers, or fried fish.
Once you stay you don't want to leave.

What was the most surprising thing you saw or did?
Its a small island surrounded by water. One of the few places where you can watch the sunrise and set over the ocean in the same spot. The water is warm for morning sunrise or sunset swims. At night without all the light pollution you see many more stars in the sky, and easily make out the Milky Way light band across the sky.
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Koron
5/5
Yes, I recommend this program

Costa Rica animals sanctuary

My experience at the NATUWA animal sanctuary in Costa Rica was amazing! I worked with animals which was like a dream come true, as well as meeting new people who helped me with my Spanish. The bonds I created with everyone will never be forgotten. Zoe and Lorenzo were very helpful with my trip and made sure I was okay every step of the way. I highly recommend this project for any solo travelers looking to have fun and experience working with animals and doing conservation work while learning spanish.

What was your funniest moment?
Sitting at the dinner table and joking around with my new friends!
Read my full story

Programs

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Alumni Interviews

These are in-depth Q&A sessions with verified alumni.

Koron Michie

The story of Koron Michie the young man who wanted to have a hand on experience on learning how to become a zoologist.

Why did you choose this program?

I chose the project in Costa Rica because it was my first time traveling out of the country alone and I knew it was still Central America, so I wasn't exactly too far from home. also, Costa Rica is a nice warm tropical area. the amount of I had to learn before the trip was immaculate, but I knew I would learn more on the trip. which I did.

What did your program provider (or university) assist you with, and what did you have to organize on your own?

I signed up through the Go Eco volunteer abroad. they were very helpful in helping narrow down to which project I would want to work with. The go eco program was nice enough to arrange my stay in Costa Rica with a nice family and my way to the animal sanctuary as well as giving me a list of things I needed for the trip. I had to organize my own flights, shots and packing arrangements.

What is one piece of advice you'd give to someone going on your program?

I only wish knew how exactly hot it was in Costa Rica. I recommend that you learn A decent amount of Spanish before your trip and don't be afraid to travel alone in my experience I think it's better to go alone because you can be true self it's only a leap of faith. Also have fun and learn as much as you can while you're out there.

What does an average day/week look like as a participant of this program?

So, it starts off with you waking up every morning at five getting ready and heading down to the meeting area, there you will collect the plates of the animals bring them back and make the animals breakfast then return them. after you will eat breakfast be assigned in different groups and then get ready of day of work.

Going into your experience abroad, what was your biggest fear, and how did you overcome it? How did your views on the issue change?

my biggest fear was traveling alone, but I overcame my fear because I was determined to get out and accomplish one of my goals which was to travel and have a hand on experience with working with animals. I was so driven by my passion of animals as well as wanting to meet new people and learning new languages.

Write and answer your own question.

while I was in Costa Rica, on the fourth day I accentually sprayed bug spray in my eye without flushing my eye out, it then got infected but i still carried tackled any chore I had to do for the day, and I didn't let that stop me from having a great time. the workers in Costa Rica were very helpful though.

Staff Interviews

These are in-depth Q&A sessions with program leaders.

Cassandra Federbusz

Job Title
PR Manager
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What is your favorite travel memory?

In October 2013, I spontaneously decided to join my friend in Nepal to do the Annapurna Circuit Trek after a three-month backpacking adventure in Europe. It was the most awe-inspiring journey I have ever taken. When I finally reached Thorong-La Pass (5416 m. high) I was extremely proud of myself (and stuffed from all the Dal Bhat I ate to get there)!

Which destination is most underrated? Conversely, which is most overrated?

I think any destination that isn't filled with tourists is definitely worth exploring.

How have you changed/grown since working for your current company?

Since working at GoEco, my knowledge of the world has expanded, from discovering new destinations to learning about issues I never knew existed. I've come to truly appreciate international volunteers' contributions around the globe and the role GoEco plays in the industry.

What is the best story you've heard from a return student?

We hear some incredible stories from returning volunteers each year, but I think the one that stuck with me the most so far is from Lucas after his participation in the Medical and Health Care project in India. In his blog he wrote:

"The small hospital waiting room was crowded -- full of patients from the surrounding villages seeking medical treatment. The doctor and medical staff hurried to and fro, despite the stifling heat, to treat the overload of patients. This was the scene in Karan Hospital every day. The doctors are heroes there, working endlessly to observe, diagnose and treat the plenitude of patients––a job of at least five doctors in a Western medicine facility. This is what medicine, the pursuit of helping people, is all about."

Describe a time when you felt especially proud to be part of your current team.

GoEco was recently named "Top Volunteer Abroad Organization" of 2015. It was an extremely proud moment for all of us.