Coope San Juan
San Juan, Costa Rica
Coope San Juan is a community cooperative, dedicated to agriculture and natural forest preservation, constituted in the year 1985 with 12 families from the community of La Palmera and San Juan de Ciudad Quesada. The farm has 416 hectares, 62% of natural forest, the remaining area is cultivated by the families. The income from agriculture is limited & homesteading has become the one way to preserve the rainforest and survive in the rural northern Costa Rica. The tourism project is managed by the women of the cooperative. They are close to losing their land due to failed investments in the agriculture, and their income currently is 95% agriculture and 5% tourism, essentially just enough for the basic needs of the families.
Planeterra funded 20 bicycles and related equipment, purchased at a discount from our generous local partners, Desafio, for the families to host travellers and provide cycling activities as part of the community experience. G Adventures has committed to including a two-day visit on one of its more popular tours, which results in over 1000 travellers visiting the community annually.
By bringing travelers to the community, their income will convert to being mostly from tourism instead of agriculture, which will enable the families to improve their quality of life. Additionally the income will help them to keep their land and pay debts incurred by the cooperative during leaner times.