What's happening at the SCLC
COSTA RICA NEWS
The Sarapiquí Conservation Learning Center (SCLC) is a non-profit organization focused on connecting local communities and conservation through our library, educational resources and extensive community programs. Located on the Selva Verde Lodge grounds, the Center was started in 1993 and is funded primarily through rural community tourism activities.
The Library Program
As many of you may already know, the Center is home to the only library in the Sarapiquí region. It’s also part of Costa Rica’s National Library System (Sistema Nacional de Bibliotecas) and houses over 3,000 books! In addition to being a place to explore, study and check out books, the SCLC library offers a variety of continuing education programs for people of all ages.
From January 22 to February 9, the center hosted a variety of workshops to engage school-age children during the Costa Rican school break that runs from December –February. Here’s a look at the workshops:
- Climate change and Dengue Prevention for ages 9-12 years old
- Introduction to Computers for ages 9-12 years old
- Balloon art for ages 9-12 years old
- Making planters using old textiles & cement for youth and adults
- English Language for ages 9-12 years old
In total there were 43 participants from the area—a special thank you to the volunteers who made these programs possible!
English Classes are on!
At the learning center, one of the flagship programs has always been (and continues to be) our English as a Foreign Language classes. These classes are so important because they help community members in critical ways, especially in regards to their professional development—English comprehension is a vital skill for entering the tourism field.
In total there are approximately 55 students enrolled, including adult and youth participants. Classes are carried out in five-month blocks and will run from February 12- July 13 of this year. There are basic, intermediate and advanced levels; adult classes are held four days a week for two hours in the evening and a children’s class is offered every Saturday for 2 hours as well.
(Though the classes are not free, they are offered at a slightly reduced rate.)
Local author Carmen Flores will be doing a reading of her children’s books at the SCLC!
Children from a childcare facility in Puerto Viejo will be coming to the Library to hear Carmen read her book, “The Monster of Sarapiquí” and others. Carmen is the published author of two children’s books. Her most recent book, “The Monster of Sarapiquí” has special relevance for the Center, as it recounts the story of a family who moves from the city to the “wilds” of Sarapiquí. At first they are very afraid of the wildlife and the environment, but they come to realize that nature is not an enemy; quite the contrary! For this activity, we have teamed up with the Costa Rican Institute for Childhood and Adolescence. The organization will be aiding with transportation and providing snacks for the children who participate.
March 14: The Mobile-Book-Bus or Bibliobus will be coming through Sarapiquí!
The bibliobus is essentially a traveling library that provides services to educational centers that don’t have a library. Typically, three per year, where inside, the bus is set up like an actual library and it’s the only one of its kind in the entire country! Children and young adults have the opportunity to spend time in the mobile library, reading and engaging in other educational activities.
This year the Bibliobus will be making visits on March 14, July 17 and September 11.
Melico Salazar Theatre, one of the premier theatre and dance institutions in Costa Rica, will be coming to the Learning Center to provide dance workshops to older adults and children as part of their social extension program. In total there will be two workshops focused on contemporary dance, dates and times pending.
April 23: World Book Day– the Learning Center will be celebrating by inviting people to become library cardholders and giving away a free book! We currently have 40 official library members – we are trying to reach our goal of 300 by the end of 2018!
Big thanks to our local volunteers and contributors: Daniel Juarez, Leslie Vargas, Judith Camacho, and Ana Elena Catillo. Their support was invaluable.
Stay tuned for updates on potential new programs in the works!
- Letras y Pinceles (Letters & Brushes)
- Aves y Comunidad (Birds and Community)