We welcome to our network residents, business representatives and professionals who are concerned for the wellbeing of Monteverde in general. We invite you to contact us for more information on how you can become an affiliate of the MCF, whether that's as an internal member of our association or as an official collaborator in one of our external programs.
Bryna Belisle, Co-Owner
"Insects are also part of our community"
Bryna Belisle is the co-owner of the Monteverde Butterfly Garden. This garden is an educational center about insects that was founded 25 years ago, but Bryna and her husband bought it 3.5 years ago. They do many things for sustainability, like using solar panels.
They have collaborated with the Monteverde Community Fund since 3 years ago and participate in the Sustainability and Philanthropy Fair. They like to collaborate with the MCF because they have the same ideas, they are interested in the projects, and they want to work together with the community for a better future.
Dev Joslin, member of the MCF
"I have confidence in the Monteverde Community Fund"
John “Dev” Joslin has a doctorate in forest sciences and has been a member of the MCF since 2012. He serves on committees to advise and help develop projects. He also works for CIEE and donates what he earns from this job as an annual contribution to the Climate Change Fund. He collaborates with the MCF because he is interested in the projects and has confidence in the organization. He thinks that the MCF manages its resources well to help the community.
Heather Vrentas, General Manager
"I want to help the community remain dynamic"
Montana Coffee Traders is a company in the United States created in 1981. The owners are Beth and R.C. Beall; Heather Vrentas is the General Manager. This company is a coffee roaster, wholesaler, and also operates a coffee shop in Montana.
It is a company that works hand in hand with sustainable development; they recycle, offer the coffee waste to farmers for organic fertilizer, use a hybrid vehicle, and buy milk from local producers.
The company became a Community Fund donor in 2014. They sell Monteverde coffee and educate clients about this coffee because they want the community to remain dynamic.
José Cruz Leitón, co-owner of Don Juan Tours
"Thanks to the community, my business works"
José Cruz Leitón is a co-owner of the company Don Juan Coffee Tours. It is a company that produces coffee, chocolate, and sugar cane. Don Juan Tours provides a tour in which visitors can taste the coffee and chocolate and can mill sugar cane to drink the juice.
Don Juan Tours became a MCF collaborator in 2016. His project to contribute to the MCF is selling 6 types of coffee at a special price and donating a portion to the Environment Fund. He wants to contribute because his company is involved in the community and thanks to the community, his business works.
Tel. 2645-7100 / 2645-6920
Ana Carmona, local liaison for the IAF
"I want to help the communities that need it the most"
The Inter-American Foundation (IAF) is in Washington D.C. in the United States. Marcy Kelley is the country director and Ana Carmona has been the national liaison for Costa Rica since 2012. It is an independent government organization created in 1969 to help the communities with the greatest need. The IAF gives donations to help communities that have local projects.
The IAF made an important donation for the creation of the Monteverde Community Fund and a portion of this contribution was designated for community projects.
Tel. 8328-6588 / 2275-8134
José Luis Vargas, Manager
"The MCF promotes mechanisms that distribute the benefits of tourism to more people in the zone"
The business Unión Varsan de Monteverde was created in 1989 and has two services: Café de Monteverde and Life Monteverde. Café de Monteverde is a coffee farm that provides guided tours for tourists and a coffee shop in Monteverde. Life Monteverde is an environmental education program with crops and animals to welcome students. The company has two certifications: Ecological Blue Flag (4 stars) and Friends of the Earth.
Unión Varsan de Monteverde has collaborated with the Monteverde Community Fund since 2014. They make annual donations, along with the company Montana Coffee Traders, and also help to organize walks and other activities to raise funds.
The company wants to collaborate because it is an excellent way to strengthen sustainability and environmental protection initiatives. It is also an opportunity to join together to do educational projects.
Andrés Trapp, Annelie Hoepker and Sigrid Collado- Sustainability Team
"The MCF is an excellent tool for helping the community"
The Trapp Family Hotel is a family-owned business established in 1999. It offers a full-service restaurant, 26 rooms and a staff of 16 local employees. The hotel has earned 4 leaves in the CST certification program.
Co-owner Andrés Trapp works with his mother and two colleagues, Annelie and Sigrid, to strengthen internal and external sustainability practices. This business has been a collaborator of the MCF for over a year, initially supporting the campaign to build mini-recycling centers, which are seen around town today. Currently, the Trapp Family Hotel serves as an official donation collection site, inviting their guests to match contributions donated directly by the business.
The Trapp family wants to support its community. They believe the MCF is an excellent tool for the community as it is a serious organization and supports projects that are sustainable. Themes that interest the family include arts and culture, as they receive less attention at the national level, as well as the Bellbird Biological Corridor.
Karen Fallas Monge, Owner
"I can pool my donations with others for greater impact in projects throughout the region"
Karen Fallas Monge is the owner and creator of Ocotea Tours & Transfers. The business was created in 2006 as a tourism transport service and expanded in 2008 as a tour operator. The family business employs 3 full-time staff and 30 contracted drivers and guides. Ocotea Tours has 4 leaves in the CST certification program.
Karen is a Board Member of the MCF and collaborates through the Travelers' Philanthropy Program. She invests through the MCF because she is committed to improving the general well-being and development of her community.
Esteban Vargas, Co-Owner
"It motivates me to collaborate with the community"
Esteban Vargas manages the Mariposa Bed & Breakfast with his mother. It is a family business created in 1995 with his parents.
Mariposa B&B has been a MCF collaborator since 1 year ago. Initially they made small donations and now they participate as a collection point for the Travelers’ Philanthropy program.
What motivates Esteban to contribute in this way is working with his community, helping local families, and protecting the environment.
Rafael Arguedas, Co-owner
"Because they enable us to develop our social responsibility program, which each and every one of us should do"
Rafael Arguedas is a co-owner of Cabañas y Jardínes Los Pinos. This family business was established in 1987 by Rafael's parents. Under his leadership, the business has expanded to include a staff of 12 and 15 separate cabins with a capacity for 60 visitors at any given time. The property includes 8 hectares of private reserve, 1.5 km of trails and a hydroponic garden which guests can visit.
The hotel has three separate sustainability certifications, including: 5 leaves in the CST program, the Ecological Blue Flag and the Seal of Sanitary Excellence. Los Pinos has been a collaborator of the MCF since 2011 and currently supports it in various ways. In addition to serving as a site for the community walking tour, the business also actively invites its guests to match business donations, which support a wide range of community projects. For Rafael, collaborating with the MCF is part of their social corporate responsability, one that he believes all of us should consider.
Raquel Sánchez y Francisco Castro, Owners
"Because we also strive for holistic community development in Monteverde."
Raquel and Francisco created Cala Lodge in 2007. The hotel has 3 stars from the Costa Rica Tourism Board (ICT) and is in the process of gaining Certification for Sustainable Tourism (CST).
Cala Lodge has been a MCF contributor since 2013. They make extraordinary contributions to specific projects, like the mini recycling collection centers project and the wastewater project.
They have also been a collection site for the Travelers’ Philanthropy Program since 2014. Raquel’s motivation to collaborate with the MCF is a personal conviction to participate in holistic projects and contribute to the community.
Leslie Burlingame, Donor
"The Fund does important things"
Leslie Burlingame lives in the United States and visits Monteverde every year since 25 years ago. She is a retired university professor of science, medicine, and environmental studies in the United States. She also does research on sustainability in Monteverde and wrote a chapter in the book Monteverde: Ecology and Conservation of a Tropical Cloud Forest.
Leslie has been a donor since 2 years ago and makes annual donations. She also contributes to the Community Library, the Monteverde Institute, and other NGOs in Costa Rica and the United States. She would also like to volunteer at the Fund writing articles for the website. She likes what the Fund does very much and thinks that their team does a very good job. Leslie is a donor because she wants to support the projects and help the community, especially on environmental education, sustainable development, and climate change.
Edible plant garden supported by Engage Globally
"I like that the MCF helps the community have power"
Heather Heckel created Engage Globally in 2014 and is the director. It is an organization that helps develop projects created by communities and not the government, especially education and conservation projects.
Engage Globally became a MCF donor in 2015. They make small donations to help start conservation projects and also find other donors in the United States.
She wanted to be a donor because she likes that the foundation helps the community have power and meet sustainable goals. She also wants to contribute to the conservation of biodiversity in Monteverde.
Shannon Smith, Owner
"The MCF promotes responsible stewardship of our natural and cultural resources"
The business Pensión Tejas SA is divided in two parts: Pensión Santa Elena and Taco Taco Restaurant. Shannon Smith is in charge of Taco Taco and her brother of the Pensión. Taco Taco is a taqueria that offers local and Tex-Mex products and the Pensión is an adventure travelers hotel and is one of the oldest hotels in Monteverde.
The company collaborates with the MCF since its creation. It used to be a collection point for the Travelers’ Philanthropy program and wants to rejoin the program. She is motivated to collaborate with the MCF because it is her community and her responsibility as a businessperson in Monteverde.
"The MCF unites us all behind issues that affect the whole community."
Katy is a local resident, climate change activist and member of the MCF Board of Directors. She has been instrumental in establishing the Climate Change Fund, as well as mobilizing local stakeholders through research, educational events and action committees.
Katy emphasizes, "When we align our efforts toward a common purpose, we can reach goals we could not have met alone. The most urgent challenge facing life on earth is climate change. With the help of the Community Fund, we can respond creatively to make Monteverde resilient to climate change."
Walter Chavarría Loria, Manager
"All areas are important for the community; one cannot exist without the others"
Walter is the manager of the condominium Plaza Monteverde since April 2012. When the Centro Comercial was created in Santa Elena 6 years ago, this management was created with the purpose of managing the common expenses of the renters of the units.
Plaza Monteverde has been a collaborator of MCF since it moved its office to the Centro Comercial. Plaza Monteverde provides the MCF and also the Community Library with nearly free space.
Walter helps the community in many ways; he is the president of the Board of Health and supports other local organizations. It is important to him to help his community and to him all areas (health, education, environment) are important for maintaining the wellbeing of the community.
Sindy Brown, Commercial Director and co-owner
"We should support community projects through the contributions that we make to the MCF. We can only foster a holistic & sustainable destination together."
SinwaTours Dreams, is a family business founded in 2010 as Tour Operator & customized Travel Organizer. They promote sustainable practices that minimize negative impacts on the environment through high standards and policies, the programs of their suppliers, and activities. They guarantee excellent service for customers through packages focused on Conservation and Environmental Education that operate in harmony with the Sustainable Tourism.
Sindy Brown, commercial director and co-owner of SinwaTours, is an active member of the MCF. She, her husband, and daughter became Monteverde Community Fund donors in 2016. This family business is sure that their contributions help the development of the community.
Tel. 2645-6975 / 8839-6196
Walter Salas, Owner
"The MCF promotes more renewable energy and energy efficiency"
Walter Salas created his company 8 years ago and is a project manager. SC Ingeniería is a renewable energy company in Cartago that develops solar and hydroelectric energy projects.
The business has collaborated with the MCF since September 2015 and helps the MCF in several ways. For example, for each heater sold, the company gives $30 to the MCF and for each watt of solar panels, gives a few colones to the Climate Change Fund.
He is motivated to contribute to the MCF to benefit the projects and give back to the community in this way. He wants to support the Monteverde community because he loves the place and because it is an organized and environmentally conscious town.
Marcos Méndez Sibaja and Susu Gray, co-founders and managers of Pasión Costa Rica
"The MCF enables us to support a diversity of community needs"
Pasión Costa Rica was founded in 2012 by Susu and Marcos as a way of combining efforts into to a family business. Having traveled to 30 countries between the two of them, Susu and Marcos both believe strongly in putting themselves in the shoes of the traveler. By doing this, they can provide the most personalized service, and help visitors make Monteverde a highlight of their trip in Costa Rica.
When not providing naturalist guided tours in the beautiful forests of Monteverde, Susu and Marcos are involved in reforesting Marcos’ family farms in the lowlands, traveling, and raising their 2 young daughters.
They feel supporting local efforts through the Monteverde Community Fund is an indispensable way of supporting a diversity of community needs.
+506 2645 6967
Plaza Comercial, Oficina #6, Santa Elena de Monteverde, Puntarenas
Office Hours: Monday through Thursday, 8:30am-5:00pm CST, Costa Rica