~ by Perry Gladstone
“One for all and all for one”: Community cohesion at the Costa Ballena
The Hero defines himself in crisis and so, too, does a community. This is when the morals and values built over time are called in to action, put to the test. What will we stand for? Will we endure? This past October was one of those times. Tropical Storm Nate caused widespread flooding, landslides and the worst overall damage the country has seen in years.
Amidst the chaos Costa Ballena rose to the challenge. Neighbors safe on high ground offered help, food and shelter to those in need. Collection points for food, clothing and necessities sprang up immediately and hundreds of deliveries were made by local héroes. They went in their own cars and trucks to Cortes, Palmar, Sierpe and points south where countless were left devastated or homeless. The locals will speak of this time for years to come.
Why mention this now weeks later? Because good work is still needed. With tourism approaching it’s annual peak, it is essential we continue to be vigilant, supportive and aware. Crime prevention, animal rescue, environmental education, plastic reduction, clean water, lifeguards and food bank programs are just a few of the areas that require our ongoing help and attention. Whatever your cause, please stay with it. If you have time to share, money to spare, or even just a hand now and then you will make a difference. If it all sounds like a lot just remember what we are capable of when we come together.
To learn more about how and where you can help, please visit the Costa Ballena Volunteer Page on Facebook, www.amigosofcostarica.org and the following: Costa Ballena Volunteer Page – Alturas Wildlife Sanctuary – DAWG (Domestic Animal Welfare Group) – El RefUgio Costa Ballena – Reserva Playa Tortuga