NYU Alternative Breaks: Costa Rica
Alternative Breaks at NYU is subset of a larger program, known as Break Away. NYU's chapter vision statement reads: "Our vision is to create a community of lifelong active citizens who prioritize the pursuit of social justice: people who value the community as a priority when making life decisions. As part of the Alternative Break experience, participants will become more educated and experienced in all sides of a social issue. Upon return, they will be empowered to make more informed decisions and take meaningful action that supports a greater good. They will become contributing members of society and will weigh in on issues that impact their community." https://www.nyu.edu/students/getting-involved/leadership-and-service/volunteer-service/alternative-breaks.html An "Alternative Break" at NYU is an opportunity for a team of students to spend their Spring Break doing something that will have lasting impact on a social justice issue. These trips center themselves around key issues, such as Food Insecurity, Gender Inequality, Prison Reform, Environmental Sustainability, and Public Health. All students who choose to participate receive quality education on the social issue, pre-trip orientation to the region, culture, people, and work they might do, and follow this work up with reflections on their own relationship to the social issue and the systems involved. Our particular trip focuses on Environmental Sustainability and Community Development. Our goal is to learn, advocate, and engage in various service activities related to environmental activism and community cooperation. This trip aims to equip students with the knowledge, skills, and experiences necessary for promoting environmental responsibility in a global context. We will be heading to Quepos, Costa Rica under the supervision of the nonprofit group, GVI. Our activities will include creating community places on beaches, including painting, putting together buildings, and cleaning up these areas. We will also engage in some biodiversity work, assisting the community in the creation of sea turtle nests. Why should you help us? - Protect biodiversity: A large part of the work assists the community in protecting the flora and fauna of Quepos, Costa Rica. This is one of the most biodiverse places on Earth: "Costa Rica’s Osa peninsula, a former island that now makes up the southernmost reach of the country’s Pacific coast, was called “the most biologically intense place on Earth” by National Geographic. It crams 2.5% of the planet’s biodiversity into just 0.001% of its surface area. And, this being Costa Rica, 80% of it is protected, mostly by the Corcovado national park."" https://www.theguardian.com/travel/2017/feb/05/costa-rica-national-park-community-osa-peninsula-adventure -Amplifying another culture: As we are guests in Costa Rica, coming with a set of privileges, it is imperative that our presence is not harmful and we act only in service to another culture. We aim to learn about the history, stories, and rich, authentic culture of Quepos. When we leave from Quepos, we bring back with us important lessons, stories, and beliefs imparted upon us by the community in Quepos, which will only be amplified as we continue on. -Be part of a global movement The topics of Environmental Sustainability, Climate Change, and Social Responsibility are absolutely on fire these days. Our trip offers a hands-on, educational service opportunity that addresses these issues, with the aim of creating lasting impact. Your support on this project will enable our team members to make the greatest impact possible, and thus make you an instrumental part of creating global, lasting change.