Costa Rica, one of the world’s most biodiverse countries, is home to more than 500,000 species, nearly 4% of the total estimated species in the world! Volunteering with Rescate Animal Zooave is an exciting opportunity to experience Costa Rica and dedicate your time and skills to support our mission to protect and restore Costa Rica’s biodiversity through wildlife rescue and release, endangered species breeding and life-time care for non-releasable wildlife. Rescate Animal Zooave is located in La Garita de Alajuela, just 40 minutes from San José and 15 minutes from Juan Santa María International Airport.

There are three main centers at Rescate Animal Zooave, a state-of the art Wildlife Rescue Center and veterinary clinic, an Endangered Wildlife Reproduction Center and a Conservation Park consisting of 35 acres of lush botanical gardens with more than 125 species of animals, among them birds, mammals and reptiles that have been rescued and, due to health or behavioral reasons, cannot be fully rehabilitated for reintroduction into their natural habitat. The large enclosures are naturally designed to allow non-releasable wildlife a high quality of life with lots of natural enrichment.

In addition to releasing wildlife in the Conservation Park in La Garita de Alajuela, Rescate Animal Zooave also maintains two release sites; Bosque Escondido Wildlife Refuge, a 720 hectaZooAre dry tropical forest in the Nicoya Peninsula and; Golfito, a 37 hectare tropical rainforest in the province of Puntarenas. Volunteers will have an opportunity to assist at the Bosque Escondido Wildlife Refuge.


Please read the following information. If you are interested in volunteering please click here to download a form and send it to


• Must be 18 years of age or older.
• Fluent in English or Spanish.
• Health insurance certificate.
• Negative tb test or tb vaccination.
• No specific qualifications are required to become a Volunteer, although different roles may suit different experience levels/interests.
• Volunteers need to be flexible and practical in nature and prepared to work with people from diverse backgrounds.


Volunteers will assist with various tasks in the Endangered Wildlife Reproduction Center, the quarantine facility and the Conservation Park. Volunteer roles may include any of the following:

• Preparing animal diets.
• Feeding animals.
• Cleaning enclosures.
• Creating environmental enrichment items (toys, food puzzles etc.).
• Behavioral observations.
• Enclosure maintenance.
• Assisting with food runs.
• Collecting browse, logs and branches.
• Gardening/ Landscaping.
• Construction


Accommodation will be provided in a safe, newly refurbished, mixed-gender 8 bed (2 bedroom) dormitory with a shared bathroom and kitchen/lounge area. Rescate Animal Zooave is fenced and has 24 hour security.


Costa Rica, one of the world’s most biodiverse countries, is home to more than 500,000 species, nearly 4% of the total estimated species in the world. It is a rugged, heavily rain-forested country with extensive coastlines on both the Caribbean and Pacific sides. The capital city, San Jose, is steeped in culture and history and offers ample opportunity for sampling local cuisine and enjoying an active nightlife. Outside the city, Costa Rica is well known for its beaches, volcanoes, and protected jungle teeming with wildlife including coatis, monkeys, sloths and numerous bird species and encompassing roughly a quarter of the country. Brave the white-water rapids, zip-line across amazing ravines, visit an ancient volcano and take a dip in the hot springs, snorkel the reefs under dazzling blue waters or simply relax on a pristine white sand beach with an Agua de Pipa (fresh coconut water). Whatever your interest, we can help you organize a holiday in Costa Rica before or after your volunteer stay.


• Airport transfer.
• Accommodation.
• Breakfast foods (milk, cereal, eggs, fruit, coffee, tea). Volunteers prepare their own breakfast.
• Prepared lunch and dinner (vegetarian meals available upon request).
• Linens.
• Training.


• Flights or other transportation to Costa Rica.
• Insurance.
• Visa costs.
• Medical care.



Please be sure to notify us of your payment immediately at: