Volunteers from throughout the Puntarenas region of Costa Rica and beyond made a huge social impact in Jaco, Costa Rica over the weekend that ran from May 27-30, 2022. In a day full of events centered around taking care of Jaco's beautiful beaches and promoting environmental sustainability and responsibility, adults and children gathered together to share in a “Great Day for the Seas.”
In what became known as the Puntarenas Great Simultaneous Clean-Up, lovers of Jaco and the environment gathered to remove trash from Roca Loca Beach and nearby areas. Several non-profit organizations and governmental departments were present, including Un Puerto Limpio, Jacó Impact, Ruta 27, ACOS, The Clean Wave, and the Municipality of Garabito.By the end of the event, over 230 kilograms of garbage had been collected and properly disposed of from Roca Loca Beach. Helpers sorted out different types of plastic, rubber tires, bottles, and more so that they could be appropriately recycled based on their composition.
Participating organizations called it "The Great Day for the Seas," going above and beyond the typical beach clean-up initiative by offering workshops, crafts, and a small business fair to promote environmental responsibility. Activities were focused on climate action and creating awareness of how the people of Jaco, Costa Rica and its neighboring provinces can come together in environmental community. After the morning clean-up at Roca Loca, volunteers headed over to the eco-fair. This collection of entrepreneur vendors comprised about 20 business owners from the Jaco, Costa Rica area selling and promoting environmentally friendly or bio-sustainable products and services. Some booths featured articles of clothing upcycled from recycled fabric, while others offered organic and homemade crafts and goods.
In Jaco, Costa Rica, environmental responsibility isn't just for the adults. The host organizations want to make an impact that will ripple through generations by empowering young people to be agents of change throughout their entire lives. Workshops for children were held to educate them on making a positive difference in their communities now and in years to come. Whole families participated in activities designed for learning, creativity, and fun. Workshops included making handbags from recycled milk cartons, designing flower pots from plastic bottles, and creating environmental awareness signs to hang up throughout the community. In addition to the clean-up, eco-fair, and workshops, the Great Day for the Seas included a variety of entertainment for participants such as yoga lessons and live music from local artists.
One of the participating organizations, Jacó Impact, is very active in the local region where they are committed to environmental stewardship and social welfare. This was one of the first major events they co-hosted since relocating to their new headquarters on Route 94.
Un Puerto Limpio is another non-profit group dedicated to caring for the ecosystems of Costa Rica by cleaning up beaches in the Puntarenas province. They host many workshops geared toward children as well as forums on climate action.
The Clean Wave - which is based in Tamarindo, Costa Rica - shuttled volunteers down the coast to participate in the Great Day for the Seas. Their mission is to make Tamarindo a “zero waste community” and create healthier environments throughout the region.
The Great Day for the Seas and the Puntarenas Great Simultaneous Clean-Up was a massive success, not only purging the shores of trash, but also building social awareness of ways that residents of Jaco, Costa Rica and beyond can better care for their beautiful, exotic environment.