Chloe Greer - 2014 Program Participant

Graduation at the Costa Rican Language Academy

Graduating from the Costa Rican Language Academy.

What made you decide to volunteer abroad?

For me, there were two main reasons I chose to volunteer abroad. First was to travel, and the second was to share my passion for dance, enthusiasm for movement, and numerous creative skills with children who were less fortunate than myself.

What made you select Costa Rica?

Performing Arts Abroad offers dance volunteering opportunities in numerous different countries, for me it had to be Costa Rica! I selected Costa Rica because not only is it a beautiful country with lots of sunshine (something we don’t get too much of in November in England!), but also because they speak Spanish. Although I don’t speak much of the language, I do speak a bit, and was keen to improve my knowledge. I was also curious as to how I would cope when teaching young children in a foreign language.

What about Performing Arts Abroad specifically?

I’d heard many good things about Performing Arts Abroad from a friend and course mate who recently traveled to South Africa with them. Following a conversation with her, as well as some online research, I decided to contact the company to find out some more information about their different opportunities.

What were your housing arrangements like in Costa Rica?

During my time in Costa Rica I lived with a host family, and I absolutely loved it! I had my own room, and shared a bathroom with another volunteer who was from Belgium. Not only was I able to socialize with the family, but also shared meals together and bonded over some hilarious Costa Rican television.

Children performing at Noche de Navidad in Costa Rica

Performing “Rockin around the Christmas Tree” at Noche de Navidad.

What is your favorite part about living with a host family?

My favorite part would have to be the day my Mama Tica and I attempted to bake bread together. Although we were unsuccessful in making anything edible, it was lovely to spend time with her. It was occasions such as these that really helped improve my Spanish.

What if your most memorable experience from your time in Costa Rica?

My most memorable experience was also my biggest challenge – teaching and performing “I Just Can’t Wait to be King!” Throughout the rehearsal process there had been a few hiccups (primarily linguistic!), however, when the time came to perform the dance, all the children behaved, performed, and roared fantastically; their enthusiasm was infectious!!

Costa Rican children at dance rehearsal

Group photo after a rehearsal.

Would you recommend your program to other potential participants? 

I was incredibly impressed with all the help, support, and advice Performing Arts Abroad provided me before, during, and after my placement. I would highly recommend Performing Arts Abroad to anyone!!

If you could change one thing about your program, what would it be?

Although I thoroughly enjoyed my placement, if I were to make one change it would be to spend longer studying at the Costa Rican Language Academy, meaning I would be able to communicate ideas and choreography better when teaching the children.

Where do you hope to travel to next?

NEW YORK!! I’ve visited the city once and fell in love with it. I plan to go this summer and dance to my heart’s content!