Dr. Janet Josephson, assistant professor in Early, Middle and Exceptional Education, and 13 Marauders departed on Saturday, Jan. 5 for San Jose, Costa Rica. Students will volunteer at the Heartsong Kidtopia environmental and English immersion day camp while also exploring Heredia, tackling some white water rapids, and other cultural activities.
On Jan. 6 the Millersville students took a scenic bus ride through four provinces and had the opportunity to see several volcanoes in the distance. After a traditional Costa Rican breakfast of eggs, fried cheese, and rice and beans, they went white water rafting in class I-IV rapids stretching 25 kilometers of the Pacuare River. The students learned of several indigenous families in need of Christmas gifts for their children, and the Marauders took a collection to purchase toy trucks, soccer balls, dolls and clothing for four children in need. “It was a wonderful way to begin our week of service,” said Josephson.
On Jan. 7, Millersville students opened and staffed the first-ever Kidtopia camp in Costa Rica. Children ages 5-13 attended the half-day program where MU students led activities in art, sports and environmental science. After camp, the students had a tour of historic downtown Heredia followed by a local fruit sampling.
The students were able to participate in many sports after their work at the camp. They also took trips to the river to build bird nests from the natural surroundings, and take part in many arts and crafts activities. After a quick lunch at camp, the students visited the Toucan Rescue Ranch.