Imagine having your way of life threatened by external forces beyond your control. Imagine having no place to sleep, no food to eat and no medicine to cure your wounds. Imagine no one listening to your cry for help.

That's the reality for many of Costa Rica's precious wildlife that, without help from people who care about wildlife preservation, would ultimately face death and in worse cases extinction. With nobody to help and economic expansion threatening their homes and their lives, wildlife is being displaced in record numbers.

In early 2009, local conservationist and animal lover, Vanessa Lizano, decided to make a difference in the lives of these helpless animals. She opened the Costa Rican Wildlife Sanctuary right outside the Port of Limon on the Caribbean side of Costa Rica with no funding or any government assistance. Her passion and the help of hundreds of volunteers fueled the growth of the Sanctuary and over the years countless animals including monkeys, sloths and endangered sea turtles were rescued, rehabilitated and released back into their natural habitat.

However, with all good things in life it did come to an end. In 2013, the government of Costa Rica chose to ignore their wildlife preservation responsibilities and instead allowed a new shipping terminal to be built where the Sanctuary was located.Earlier in that same year her best friend and fellow conservationist, Jairo Mora, was killed by turtle-poachers on the beaches of Moin in close proximity to the farm. The combination of these two events forced Vanessa to leave Limon and find a safe location more suitable for long-term growth.

That's where the Rescue Center comes in. Located in beautiful San Jose, Costa Rica the Rescue Center with Vanessa leading the way finds the very best enviromental programs in Costa Rica and connects volunteers with these programs to ensure an awesome experience. Vanessa personally is involved with each program we recommend and ensures that each and every volunteer walks away fulfiled with lifelong memories.

Vanessa's mission of rescue, rehabilitation and release is once again a reality. The name and locations are new but her passion is still the same. With the help of volunteers and interns the Rescue Center in Costa Rica is becoming the best way to ensure your volunteer experience is second to none.

Rescue Center Founder - Vanessa Lizano

Click any of the following links to learn more about Vanessa:

Remote Costa Rican Beach Becomes Battleground Over Sea Turtle Eggs