Founded in 2002, Cloudbridge Nature Reserve is a private, non-profit cloudforest reserve in the Talamanca mountains of Costa Rica. Beginning with the purchase of degraded farmland, Cloudbridge has been actively reforesting the area in order to connect the forests of the Cerro Chirripó National Park with adjacent nature reserves and forested areas. Beyond reforestation work, Cloudbridge is also committed to environmental education and conducting research on the unique and diverse cloudforest ecosystem. Cloudbridge has need of volunteers and research interns, and also welcomes independent researchers.
Guided by a four-point mission statement, Cloudbridge strives to:
- Conserve our natural resources for present and future generations by using green energy, minimizing our carbon footprint, protecting our land and its inhabitants as invaluable,
promoting plant based diets, and limiting our waste.
- Reforest areas of degraded agricultural land and nurture those areas back to a climax forest composition.
- Educate an international and local audience of students, visitors and volunteers on environmental and biological topics through student focused programs, lectures, displays, and tours.
- Research the cloud forest ecosystems, flora, fauna, and the succession of reforestation by conducting, facilitating, and supporting studies from scientists around the globe.
Volunteering with Cloudbridge in Costa Rica
Cloudbridge has need of volunteers and research interns, and also welcomes independent researchers.
Volunteers help the reserve in a variety of ways, according to our needs and your abilities and interests. This may include planting trees, trail or reserve maintenance, construction projects, or assisting researchers.
Research internships are geared towards people currently or having recently finished a biology or related degree and who are looking to gain practical experience or complete an internship as part of their degree program. Interns either work on an existing research project at the reserve, or can propose their own project (subject to approval by the Scientific Coordinator).
Cloudbridge welcomes Independent Researchers who are completing Master’s or PhD research or conducting a project for an organization or institution, or who would like to lend their research expertise to a project at Cloudbridge.
Read through the organization’s Volunteer/Research page for details on the different programs.
The usual stay is 2-4 weeks (2 week min.) for volunteers, and 10-12 weeks (10 week min.) for research interns; although some have stayed for much longer. There is no minimum stay for Independent Researchers.
Upon acceptance, volunteers, interns, and researchers pay a “good faith” fee of $200 USD, which is credited towards the last two weeks of their accommodation payment ($17 USD/night for stays over 30-days and $20 USD/night for stays under 30-days). Accommodation is in one of our shared dorms. More private accommodation is sometimes available for an additional fee (subject to availability).
While food and cooking are not provided, communal kitchen facilities, work, and recreation areas are provided. Most visitors can eat on $4-5 USD a day (vegetarian diet).
Transportation by bus to San Gerardo de Rivas from San Jose is typically under $20 USD.
For more information about volunteering with Cloudbridge Nature Reserve and Reforestation Project, visit them online: