Over the years, Abriendo Mentes has hosted hundreds of volunteers from all parts of the world. We enjoy hosting volunteers who are compassionate and sympathetic, committed and culturally aware. Whether you are traveling with a group or solo, for two weeks or two months, we’d love to hear from you to see if volunteering with Abriendo Mentes is the right fit! Please fill out this form and we will be in touch with you!

Join us as a volunteer in Costa Rica and have a life changing experience!

As a volunteer, you will have the opportunity to contribute to youth and community development initiatives in Guanacaste with Abriendo Mentes. You’ll learn about and experience local Tico culture, participate in recreational activities and enjoy the natural beauty of the Costa Rican Pacific Coast. 


As a volunteer, you will have the unique opportunity to learn about ethical and responsible volunteering.  You will make a long lasting impact in our communities by adding your skills and abilities to existing programs at Abriendo Mentes. You will support local families and entrepreneurs, contributing to the economic development of the region.  Your impact will be powerful and long lasting. Participants should have an open mind and flexible attitude for working in a new and different environment.

“Volunteering at Abriendo Mentes is a transformational experience. It was incredibly rewarding to immerse myself in a new culture, improve my Spanish speaking skills and get to know the Brasilito and Potrero communities. I learned to appreciate a slower pace of life, to cherish my community and the environment we live in – that is the Tico way! Abriendo Mentes is a pillar of the community and it was an honor to be a part of that. Not a day goes by that I don’t think about this experience. I will be back!”

Courtney Hall, Former Volunteer

What do our volunteers do?

Volunteer activities

• Support the Youth Development Program including English and computer classes, art, sports and recreational activities, and field trips

• Assist the Adult English Program and provide individual English classes

• Plan community events such as movie nights, beach and park clean ups, small construction projects, etc.

• Help with women’s programming (to be determined based on volunteer’s Spanish abilities)

• Fundraising event planning and coordination

• Social media take overs

• Administrative support

Ready to apply?

Apply now and fill out the application form by clicking the button below! Upon receipt of your application we will contact you via email to set up a time to chat via Zoom. If you have questions about how this process works, do not hesitate to contact us at info@abriendoments.org.

Frequently Asked Questions

How does the application process work?
The first step is to fill out application form by clicking “Apply Now”. If we choose to move forward with your application we will invite you to an interview via Zoom. We also require a reference check and a criminal background check. If all goes favorably, we will officially invite you to become an Abriendo Mentes volunteer and participate in the program. Unfortunately, we are not able to accept everyone who applies into the program. We give priority to those who are truly looking for a meaningful experience, who are eager to contribute to Abriendo Mentes, who are open minded and who are culturally aware and sensitive.
What does ethical and responsible volunteering mean?
Ethical and responsible volunteering means that the organization works hand in hand with the community they serve. The programs and activities provided by the organization must be approved and wanted by the community. Abriendo Mentes was founded by this principal. Ethical volunteering also means that volunteers are respectful and adapt to the culture and customs of the country. It means that volunteers will contribute to and improve existing programs with Abriendo Mentes in order for them to remain sustainable. Volunteers will never take jobs away from local people. It also means protecting natural resources and the environment and leaving as little carbon footprint as possible. Ethical volunteering should be beneficial to both the volunteer and to the organization. Too often volunteer opportunities exist solely for income purposes for an organization. They don’t take into account the type of experience the volunteer wants to have, nor the real needs of the communities where the volunteers are working. Abriendo Mentes has been working in Guanacaste for over a decade and was founded on the basis of listening and responding to the communities and their needs. One of our core values is that we will never exploit a community or volunteer for personal, financial or professional gain. Our goal through this program is for the volunteer to have an unforgettable experience that results in personal growth while contributing to the success of Abriendo Mentes’ education and community development programs in Guanacaste.
Do I need to have experience or enjoy working with children to participate in the program?
While the majority of the volunteer activities involve working with children, we recognize that it’s not for everyone! That’s okay. We encourage you to apply even if you don’t want to work with children or have experience. There are other volunteer activities you can participate in such as English classes for adults, administration support, social media support and much more.
Is there a fee to volunteer?
At Abriendo Mentes, we appreciate the time and financial sacrifice that volunteers make in order to spend time with us in our communities. As there are administrative and programmatic costs associated with hosting volunteers, we ask for a tiered contribution dependent on the length of your stay to be made prior to arriving in Costa Rica in the following amounts:

  • One week: $50
  • Two weeks: $100
  • Three+ weeks: $200
For information on group contributions or any other questions, please email info@abriendomentes.org.
Is living and working in Guanacaste safe?
Yes. The areas where Abriendo Mentes work are safe, tranquil towns. We do encourage all volunteers to use common sense in regards to their personal safety, such as not walking alone at night. Most crimes that do occur in this area are crimes of opportunity, so always remember to lock your doors and keep your valuables in a safe, secure place. Natural disasters do occur in Costa Rica, most of which are earthquakes. Abriendo Mentes has emergency plans in place for natural disasters that all volunteers will be trained on upon arrival.
What airport should I fly in to?
There are two international airports in Costa Rica- San Jose (SJO) and Liberia (LIR). When possible, we recommend flying into Liberia as it is located just 45 minutes from Abriendo Mentes headquarters in Potrero. San Jose is located 5 hours away.
What should I bring with me?
The Abriendo Mentes dress code is “Professional Beach Casual” (yes, we made that up). Inside and outside of volunteering hours we always represent ourselves as professionals. However, the weather is hot year round here on the Pacific Coast. Dress tends to be less casual than a typical professional setting, so we recommend packing lightweight clothing. Shorts, t-shirts, tank tops and dresses are all acceptable for volunteering. Pack at least one pair of pants and short sleeved shirt for visiting cities where dress tends to be a bit more formal. A thorough packing list will be provided upon acceptance of the program.
Can I apply to the program if I am studying, interning or working remotely?
Yes! We can accommodate your schedule if you are balancing other responsibilities, such as studying, interning or working remotely. Get in touch with us for more info at info@abriendomentes.org.