Crocodile Bay Resort Community Engagement
Crocodile Bay Resort is located in the small village of Puerto Jimenez on the Osa Peninsula in Costa Rica. The peninsula is one of the least developed regions in the country and like many other emerging communities, it requires a little extra nurturing. The government is often unable to provide sufficient funding, so local private businesses have to step up to help the community.
‘Community Engagement’ refers to the activities that the tourism community undertakes to contribute to the wellbeing of the surrounding area. Crocodile Bay takes its engagement with the communities on the Osa Peninsula very seriously. We help extensively in the form of donations, community partnerships, encouraging employee volunteering, and donating its resources to the social and environmental causes on the Osa Peninsula.
Beau Williams, whose family started Crocodile Bay in 1999, says: “Tourism is the driving force in creating financial support for community projects. With our clients choosing to vacation at Crocodile Bay Resort, they are helping to support our local environmental and social community efforts!”
The following is a list of community projects that Crocodile Bay Resort is currently engaged in:
- Crocodile Bay supports sea conservation by helping groups like the Costa Rican Fisheries Federation (FECOP) to collect data on different fish species. They use this data to piece together, with other scientific groups, a better understanding of the habits of the various fish species so we can better protect them. Crocodile Bay has also sponsored two FECOP children’s fishing tournaments to help expose the kids in our community to sport fishing.
- The resort is a founding member of “GIRO”, the Osa Peninsula Integral Recycling Management Program. This group was created by local individuals when it became clear that the local government did not have the financial ability to supply the materials, or a workforce, to maintain an actual recycle program on the Osa Peninsula. By joining forces with other private tourist-based companies, Crocodile Bay provides the pickup and the collection service on a regular voluntary basis to those businesses. The fees that those other private businesses pay go directly to funding the working hours of the individuals at ASAOSA, who collect and process the recyclable material of the local private homes in town.
- The hotel provides financial and logistic help with an annual 10k run fundraiser called “Lapathon”, which raises money for charitable projects in the Puerto Jimenez area.
- Crocodile Bay gives regular financial support to a local animal rescue and welfare organization.
- The hotel sponsors an annual solar power workshop, which teaches locals how to install and maintain solar systems.
- When it comes to natural disasters such as severe tropical storms and flooding, Crocodile Bay provides support and resources to people in need. Our employees volunteer to help through a program called “Osa Peninsula Emergency Response”, and use the hotel’s 4×4 eco tour fleet of vehicles to provide supplies and to assist those around the Osa Peninsula during states of emergency. To date, we have contributed to the evacuation of hundreds of citizens during severe weather events, as well as providing food aid when the roads were destroyed and the government-funded relief supplies could not be delivered.
- Crocodile Bay offers significantly reduced or complimentary accommodations to private organizations that come to the Osa Peninsula to provide low-cost and free medical and dental care for financially challenged citizens.
- At the public schools on the Osa Peninsula, Crocodile Bay offers financial support and contributes its workforce to volunteer to help support the construction of new facilities and the local sports programs.
- Crocodile Bay helps local high school traditional dance groups with financial contributions. These donations help fund dance trips and the purchase of their intricate traditional outfits so they can perform here in Costa Rica, as well as internationally. The hotel also hosts international dance groups from other countries that come to Puerto Jimenez to compete with our local dance troupe.
- Crocodile Bay has stopped using plastic straws and now purchases only biodegradable straws to support a local turtle conservation project. This collective movement is helping phase out single-use plastic on the Osa Peninsula by 2020.
- The resort provides financial help to community restoration projects, such as creating a children play park and other much needed recreational areas. The next upcoming project is the construction of a basketball court in a neighborhood of Puerto Jimenez.
- The hotel organizes beach and town cleanups while also donating vehicles and employees of Crocodile Bay to help.
- The hotel provides a financial contribution to an annual fundraiser at the Osa Interactive Gardens, a butterfly and flora conservation garden, which provides education to the children of the peninsula.
- Every second week in December there is an annual Christmas event called “Festival de las Luces” where Crocodile Bay participates in the parade and distributes presents to the children.
- Crocodile Bay supports the National Learning Institute (INA) to ensure that members of the community, as well as those at Crocodile Bay, interested in learning English, may receive this education on the Osa Peninsula. To date the hotel has sponsored English classes for over 55 of its employees.
- Crocodile Bay sponsors the National Open Water Swim Circuit (Aguas Abiertas) in the form of free rooms for the volunteers and boats for the safety teams. They also help give free swimming lessons to kids that don’t know how to swim.