Application open for Project Coordinators, sea turtle nesting season 2023-2024
Join our team of Project Coordinators! in any of our sea turtle’s nesting sites south of the Nicoya peninsula in Costa Rica!
About the organization: Centro de Rescate de Especies Marinas Amenazadas (CREMA) operates a multifaceted approach for the conservation of endangered marine species at several beaches Southern Nicoya Peninsula, Costa Rica. In our sea turtle nesting program, which opens annually during the Olive Ridley nesting season (June – January), we conduct beach monitoring (night patrols and morning censuses), nest relocations into project hatcheries, environmental education activities, and help on the environmental awareness with the local and international community, that also helps on generating job opportunities for the locals and promoting sustainable tourism development. Olive Ridleys (Lepidochelys olivacea) is the most frequent and main species that nest on these beaches, but there is also sporadic nesting of Green (Chelonia mydas), Leatherback (Dermochelys coriacea), and Hawksbill (Eretmochelys imbricata) sea turtles. Egg poaching is a major threat to the nesting sea turtles on these beaches. Secondary threats include nest predation, plastic pollution, beach development and erosion, and tourist traffic. On the beaches, CREMA directs all our efforts to prevent and ultimately decrease these threats.
Job title: Beach Project Coordinator
Position: Volunteer-based, seasonal, must be available for evenings, weekends and holidays when necessary.
Summary: The Beach Project Coordinator position is responsible for supervising Local Monitors, International Research Assistants/Interns, and short-term Volunteers. Coordinators will also oversee night patrols and morning censuses, data entry, hatchery supervision, and management, organizing/planning environmental and English classes (the latter only if/when possible) with the community, among other duties. The Beach Project Coordinator candidates will be a highly motivated, organized, self-starter that also thrives in team settings. The team of coordinators will be actively engaged with an exciting community of volunteers, students, researchers, and local members wrapped in the magnificent mantra of the Costa Rican Pura Vida.
- San Miguel: June 20th – December 15th, 2023
- Costa de Oro: June 20th – December 15th, 2023
- Corozalito: June 20th, 2023 – January 31st, 2024
- Bejuco**: September 1st, 2023 – January 31st, 2024
**Program dates might change by the starting date of the season
Location: Positions are available at our four project sites located on the Southern Nicoya Peninsula, Guanacaste, Costa Rica:
– San Miguel and Costa de Oro: these two beaches host several hundred nesting olive ridley sea turtles per season, with occasional nesting of green, hawksbill, and leatherback turtles. These project sites have a variable number of volunteers and visitors. San Miguel and Costa de Oro coordinators must be sociable and be willing to work with a constantly changing team. San Miguel is the only project site with two coordinators: a Research Coordinator, and a Volunteer Coordinator.
– Bejuco: this project site is operated under close collaboration with the small-scale sustainable fishing community of Bejuco (ASOBEJUCO), as it represents a sustainable source of income for its members. It is physically demanding due to the characteristics of the beach (steep, soft sand, length) and the challenges of monitoring its sea turtle hatchery. It is the most rustic and basic project of the four.
– Corozalito: this beach hosts several thousand nesting olive ridley sea turtles per season and occasional nesting of green, hawksbill, and leatherback turtles. It is the most physically demanding project mostly due to the characteristics of its nesting activity.
Qualifications: A minimum of a bachelor’s degree in a relevant discipline is desired. Must be organized with attention to detail and be able to communicate effectively, both orally and in writing (English and Spanish) and be able to adapt to unexpected situations and unfamiliar cultures. Applicants must be available to work full dates (from 6 to 7 months, project dependent). This position requires having previous experience working with sea turtles and environmental education programs. Applicants must be reliable, responsible, free-thinkers, self-starters, and have a drive for working in a team as a leader. Must have strong interpersonal, communication, decision making, logistical and organizational skills. Must feel comfortable working in the outdoors and/or isolated settings, be in a good physical condition (be able to lift 45Kg [100 pounds], walk on soft sand, etc) and able to undertake physical labour activities during night and day in extreme weather conditions while maintaining energy and stamina. Applicants must be able to accept and give feedback and maintain a motivated and positive environment.
Reports to: CREMA’s Sea Turtle Nesting Supervisors (Field and Research).
Job duties: There are five main activities in the nesting areas:
- Beach monitoring,
- Nest management,
- Maintenance and day-to-day duties,
- Lead volunteers and visitors,
- Public awareness.
During a typical workweek, you will be expected to work 6 days a week. Working hours are usually during the night-time, and the remaining time is spent maintaining equipment and processing data.
Project Coordinators must:
- Bring a positive attitude and be communicative about all issues regarding the team and the research, which are essential for the position.
- Work with a small team
- Coordinate and supervise the activities of Research Assistants, Volunteers, and Local monitors.
- Lead 3-4-hour night patrols and morning censuses.
- Collect biometric data and tagging nesting turtles.
- Photo ID and Tissue sample collection.
- Build and maintain project hatcheries.
- Monitor hatchery, conduct nest excavations, and release hatchlings.
- Work together with local monitors.
- Update collected data (data entry) and prepare weekly schedules.
- Visit other projects when necessary.
- Plan and implement environmental and English classes with the community.
- Up-keep and station-house maintenance.
- Train volunteers.
- Assist in gathering content for digital publications (social media platforms).
- Maintain professional, open communication with staff and volunteers.
- Attend all scheduled staff meetings with the Research and Field Supervisors.
- Conduct ongoing supply and equipment inventory.
Although there is an important research aspect integrated in the position; most of these projects are financed via a volunteer program held by Turtle Trax S.A. It is essential that both coordinators and research assistants make a conscious effort to make the volunteers feel included and part of the research team as well as provide them with a positive experience during their stay.
Benefits/Costs: Meals and accommodation will be covered by CREMA during the length of the project. Coordinators will be given a stipend of 100,000 Costa Rican colones per month. This stipend is intended to cover other living costs. Beach Project Coordinators will be responsible for their own transportation to and from their project sites, nevertheless, CREMA will cover USD $300 of their flight costs.
Application Instructions: Please submit a resume, cover letter, and three references to firstname.lastname@example.org, email@example.com and firstname.lastname@example.org. Please make the subject line “BEACH PROJECT COORIDNATOR POSITION_ (your last name)” so it does not get lost. Candidates who do not meet the skills and qualifications laid out in this document will not be considered.