Dental Team #NAUDENT730

COUNTRY: Costa Rica

ARRIVAL: July 30, 2017
DEPARTURE: August 7, 2017
DURATION: 9 Days
ARRIVAL CITY: San Jose
DEPARTURE CITY: San Jose

Just 3 more volunteers to make this trip a 'go'!

The NAUDENT730 team will be serving in Costa Rica serving as dental hygienist in institutional settings. While there they will also have the opportunity to enjoy the beauty of Costa Rica and it's people as well as the cuisine and culture.

Dental Teams

Dental care is one of the most critically underserved areas of international health care, as dental care is usually not included in the socialized health care systems found in most developing countries.  Through ISL, thousands receive dental care – with your help!

This program focuses on pediatric dentistry because 1)  this represents the greatest need area of dentistry in developing countries, 2) pediatric dentistry is less invasive and therefore more amenable to more activity by both dental and pre-dental students, 3) focuses our efforts on prevention and public health dentistry – clearly the advancing edge of World Health Organization guidelines and emphasis .

Our dental programming functions in accordance with the best practices of the local dental community and is compatible with ADEA guidelines.


Costa Rica

Costa Rica (“rich coast” in Spanish) is a Central American country bordered by the Pacific Ocean, the Caribbean Sea, Nicaragua and Panama. Costa Rica has become one of the most stable, democratic, prosperous, and progressive nations in Latin America. It permanently abolished its army in 1949, becoming the first of a few sovereign nations without a standing army. While Costa Rica is known for its coffee and tropical fruit exports, tourism is now the largest industry. 25% of the country’s land area is protected—one of the largest percentages in the world. From tropical Cloud Forests to Volcanoes to Beaches, Costa Rica is truly rich in geographical and bio diversity.

Costa Rica’s poverty rate is lower than most Latin American countries, but it has stalled at around 20% for almost two decades. Even so, according to Habitat for Humanity, more than 52% of the population lives in substandard houses or settlements. Costa Rica also has a large number of poverty stricken immigrants, mostly Nicaraguans. These are the communities where ISL volunteers serve. Costa Rica is good first country to visit for those who have not been exposed to extreme poverty before.


What ISL Provides

ISL Provides 24-hour accompaniment by professional, bilingual staff, airport pickup/drop off, all ground transportation, all lodging, two meals per day, drinking water, instruction by licensed dental professionals, dental supplies and medications, tours and basic recreation.

What to Bring

You will need a stethoscope, blood pressure cuff, otoscope, scrubs, donations of medications and medical supplies (optional), and funds sufficient to cover one meal per day, premium recreation, personal spending, and departure tax.

Meet the Staff

Leonardo Rodriguez Costa Rica Physical Therapist and Team Leader
Leonardo Rodriguez
Team Leader and PT

Leonardo is a bilingual Physical Therapist and Team Leader. His involvement with ISL brings him great satisfaction he says, “due to the ideals ISL stands for–Service and Learning”. He enjoys the mutual interaction that occurs with volunteers from different walks of life and the reciprocal exchange of cultures.

Abdi Acuna ISL-Costa Rica Team Leader
Abdi Acuna
Team Leader

Abdi has been with ISL-Costa Rica since 2010 and has a Master´s degree in Graphic Design. ISL volunteers love the fact that he is also certified in Massage Therapy! He enjoys traveling and playing guitar and soccer. He has always felt grateful to work with so many volunteers and to serve the underserved.

Marta Cabezas Costa Rica Team Leader
Marta Cabezas
Team Leader

Since 2006, Marta has been a Costa Rica Team Leader favorite with ISL volunteers. When she is not leading teams, she is a grandma, a hard core soccer fan, and a bilingual secretary. She has also collected over 170 Nativity sets!

Gabriela Perez
Gabriela Perez
Co-Country Coordinator

Gabriela is responsible for overseeing ISL-Costa Rica staff members and making sure everything runs smoothly for ISL teams in Costa Rica. She especially enjoys working with children and the elderly in her community. She is also pursuing a degree in Preschool Education. In her spare time she enjoys dancing, reading and spending time with her family.

Pouchi Chan
Pouchi Chan
Country Coordinator

Pouchi is responsible for overseeing ISL-Costa Rica staff members and making sure everything runs smoothly for ISL teams in Costa Rica. She graduated from the University of Costa Rica and enjoys traveling, getting to know people from different cultures and working with ISL volunteers.  Her favorite outdoor adventures include hiking and camping.

Activity Information

You will need a stethoscope, blood pressure cuff, otoscope, scrubs, donations of medications and medical supplies (optional), and funds sufficient to cover one meal per day, premium recreation, personal spending, and departure tax.