The Women’s Project for Orchid Production began due to the coffee crisis in Costa Rica that occurred in recent years. Many families in the Costa Rican countryside depend exclusively on coffee as their source for income. With fluctuations both in coffee prices and demand, a small drop in either of these can severely affect the producer’s income. Due to the coffee crisis, a group of women in the Atenas area decided to diversify their income base and start a business growing orchids and making compost. They grow the flowers for local sale (within the country) and for export. They have been in existence since 1993.
The project was originally started by 35 local women, but there are now only 8 women who have weathered the years and dedicate themselves to this project. They often have to use their own money to make improvements or to keep the project going. They coordinate with expositions and ministries to set up a table to sell their plants. They sell in San José mainly but also at any area fairs or festivals. With only 8 women left on the project, the work required to maintain the grounds, weed, make the compost and tend to the plants is always more than can be handled.
Additionally, the exposure of these rural women to outside ideas and new ways, and to practice speaking English helps them to keep their business fresh and growing and helps them interact in the business environments in which they need to deal.
What to Expect?
Your role will be getting fully involved in the orchid growing and compost making business - carrying out any chores that are required around the site as well as holding language training sessions for the women, and computer skills training if possible.
- Program ID: # 1830
- duration: 2 Weeks to 1 Month1 to 3 Months
- location: AtenasCosta Rica9° 58' 50.466" N, 84° 22' 49.7748" WCR
- Fitness level: Light ImpactModerately Fit
- Closest Airport: San Jose (SJO)
- Costs From: $1500 to $3000Over $3000
- Program Type: Community Development ProjectsWomen's & Youth Programs
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