Special announcement: Buy a book, help build a volunteer movement!

Hi all!

If you’ve been meaning to get your hands on “Love in Translation” or would like to give it as a gift this holiday season, please consider ordering a copy to benefit the Costa Rica Corps this year.

For every $25 payment to help us build a new, virtual volunteer movement to benefit Costa Rican communities, I’ll ship a copy of my book anywhere in the United States, Canada, or Costa Rica. I’ll also sign copies sent within Costa Rica, with any dedication you specify! Reader in Costa Rica have been asking me for many months how they can get their hands on a copy. Well, I’m finally ready to get to the post office for you!

Please check out the link below for more info and to order a copy, and please share with anyone else who might like to participate. Purchases can be made by PayPal, check or SINPE Móvil; orders must be received by Nov. 20 to guarantee Christmas delivery (well, “guarantee” as best we can, with the years our respective Post Offices have had! The sooner, the better…)


Thank you in advance for your support. The Costa Rica Corps is a volunteer movement through and through, but this support will jumpstart our efforts to launch new volunteer pathways and opportunities starting in January 2021!

I run the virtual volunteer community Costa Rica Corps and am the co-founder of the new, bilingual media organization El Colectivo 506. I also work as a freelance grantwriter, fundraiser, and communications coach, and write essays, articles and books. I live in San José with my husband and daughter. Sign up at top right to receive an essay in your inbox each Sunday morning: a chance to dominguear together (a lovely word that literally means, “to Sunday,” and describes a leisurely trip or ramble). We’ll explore a project, changemaker, community, or idea I’ve come across, or just watch the world go by. See you next Sunday!

Helping refugees in San José – from Rotterdam

Today I’m double-dipping and, in honor of Wellness Wednesday, resharing here a post I just published on the Costa Rica Corps website: the story of my dear friend Gabriela Díaz who joined the Corps to share her yoga skills with Nicaraguan refugees under intense stress in San José.

What I love about this story is that a Costa Rican far from her home – Gaby lives in the Netherlands – created an amazing way to provide some stress relief for another group of people who are far from their homes, albeit under drastically different circumstances.

Here’s Gaby’s story from the Costa Rica Corps page. Please use the links at the end to learn more about the Corps (which I launched as an online effort in April, and am now developing with two co-founders and an incredible group of partners) or even to sign up a volunteer, if you’d like to share your skills with Costa Rica during this time of great need around the world.

Since launching the Costa Rica Corps on April 1, we’ve connected with volunteer applicants from around the world – including many Costa Ricans eager to give back to their country from afar. Gabriela Díaz is one such volunteer, and she’s gone on to provide support for Nicaraguan refugees in Costa Rica by offering them virtual, small-group classes in yoga and stress relief.
Gabriela is a Costa Rican living in Rotterdam. She has been an avid practitioner of Ashtanga yoga for years, and has amassed experience in both teaching, and in stress relief techniques for refugee populations. She says that when she heard about the Costa Rica Corps, she jumped at the chance to connect with Costa Rica in a new way.
“I am so grateful for this opportunity,” Gaby told us last week. “It is really special to me because I don’t live in my country, and I felt like I really wanted to help during the pandemic.”
The Corps connected Gaby with Ticos and Nicas: We Are Family, a Costa Rican association that, among its many programs, offers Humanitarian University Grants (HUG) for refugees who had to abandon their studies when they fled Nicaragua because of oppressive government actions there (read more here). She worked with Nancy Lumbi of the Association to coordinate online yoga sessions for a group of young Nicaraguan HUG Scholars studying at the ULACIT in San José.
“I’ve been teaching yoga here and there for quite a while, but it has never felt so fulfilling as now,” Gaby says. “These students are just such wonderful people, and it feels like they can really use the little bit of relaxation that the yoga provides… especially right now, during the lockdown. They’re mainly at home, studying a lot, and some of them are even working full time, so it means that they can’t all come to the class all the time. We’ve been doing it once a week on Sundays, and I’ve started recording the sessions so they can keep practicing during the week.
“I am really grateful to the Costa Rica Corps for giving us this opportunity,” she adds. “Thank you everyone who is behind this program!”
Do you have a skill you’d like to share online with people in Costa Rica? We invite you to read more about the Costa Rica Corpssign up as a volunteer; or learn more about Ticos y Nicas: We Are Family.

Virtual Costa Rica: Introducing the Costa Rica Corps

My Boost today is a new effort I launched this morning: the Costa Rica Corps. It’s an initiative created by a small group of friends, all volunteering our time virtually during the COVID-19 crisis, hoping to celebrate and connect others who are doing the same.

From the start of the COVID-19 crisis, I have been working as a virtual volunteer, donating my time and expertise in communications and grantwriting to nonprofits and a small business devastated by the crisis. I know I’m not alone. Lots of us who have the privilege of staying at home, and who, in many cases including my own, have lost tons of clients and income because of the crisis, want to do something, anything, to help.

That’s why I’m launching the Costa Rica Corps in alliance with some like-minded friends. We hope to achieve a national virtual volunteer movement so people in Costa Rica and around the world who love this country can donate our time and talent to the hardest-hit sectors.

Are you a writer, editor or translator? Are you a lawyer, CEO or graphic designer? Do you have skills you can share or teach in a webinar or video call? We want to hear about your interests and abilities so we can connect you with an entity that needs your help.

If you’re already a virtual volunteer, we want to hear from you, too. Maybe you’ve never thought of yourself in those terms, but you’ve been advising a small business, or writing posts to share the efforts of a nonprofit, or doing some pro bono legal work to set up new entities, or teaching yoga for free so people in affected areas can destress.

If any of this applies to you – or if you or someone you know in Costa Rica needs a volunteer right now – then please visit the Costa Rica Corps website to fill out our survey. And please follow or like us on Instagram or Facebook (both @costaricacorps) and tag friends so our brand-new community can grow.

Thanks, today and always, for reading!