The Costa Rica Corps is proud to share our first story of a CR Corps Volunteer who made a difference during a time of great need: U.S. citizen and travel leader Ann Becker, who raised more than $12,000 to address hunger in a Costa Rican community she loves.
As a virtual volunteer for the Costa Rica Corps, she worked with a local organization and U.S. nonprofit Amigos of Costa Rica to unite her networks and create a fundraising campaign on the Amigos of Costa Rica site. The Emergency Fund for Drake Bay Families raised money through donations for the Drake Bay Nature Guides Association to distribute food, including locally sourced produce and other goods, to families that had lost their income because of the COVID-19 crisis and the suspension of international tourism in Costa Rica.
Ann – who had spent the previous 15 years leading experiential travel expeditions to Drake Bay and other Costa Rican communities through her tourism initiative, Travel with Ann – solicited donations through direct emails, social media posts, a partnership with local hotel La Paloma, and a creative “Pay It Forward” approach where she announced that anyone who donated at least $25 during a specific time frame would be entered into a raffle. Ann would draw one name and donate $250 to the nonprofit organization of that donor’s choice. By so doing, she hoped to show just how much she appreciated the fact that at a time when all communities are in need, people in her network were choosing to donate to Drake Bay. This approach kickstarted a new surge in donations near the end of the campaign and took her over her $12,000 goal line.
Coming soon in this space: a video to share her work with others who would like to work as Costa Rica Corps Volunteers to help Costa Rican organization raise funds, and resources to guide that work. For now, we invite you to read more about the Costa Rica Corps; sign up as a volunteer; visit Ann’s campaign; and learn more about Amigos of Costa Rica.