Sibu Wildlife Sanctuary is a small sanctuary, specializing in golden mantled howler monkeys. We rely on our volunteer team to keep the sanctuary running smoothly.

We look for volunteers with a real passion for our project and the work we do, who not only want to help with the daily sanctuary chores but are also motivated to support our mission to prevent the devastating and often fatal wildlife electrocutions on power lines happening daily across Costa Rica.

We require a minimum commitment of 1 month but prioritize candidates who can commit to 3 months or more. Currently we have 2 positions available for permanent staff members, including a vet tech, more detail can be provided upon request.

Volunteer responsibilities include, but are not limited to:

  • Creating and implementing enrichment ideas
  • Food preparation
  • Cleaning habitats
  • Putting out fresh leaves
  • Scrubbing soiled blankets
  • Observing behavior
  • Preparing sleeping areas
  • Keeping the sanctuary grounds clean and presentable, including all facilities
  • Working on maintenance projects

Wildlife at Sibu Wildlife Sanctuary will spend the rest of their lives here, so researching and developing enrichment projects is a top priority to ensure top quality of life. These can be related to the animals’ food: finding stimulating ways to feed the animals to recreate challenges they might face in the wild. The enrichment projects can also be related to entertainment and mental stimulation; reconfiguring habitats and building toys or objects for the animals to play with, interact with or climb over. All volunteers must have approval from management ahead of building and implementing enrichment projects.

Please note that direct contact with all wildlife is limited. If you are looking for a place to play and cuddle with monkeys, Sibu Wildlife Sanctuary is not the place for you.

Working hours depend on the number of volunteers that we have. On a normal volunteer schedule each volunteer has either 1 full day and 2 half days off per week or 2 full days off. The working days are 6.45am – 6pm, however we stagger volunteer shifts so no one is working the whole day where possible. Lunch breaks are 1.5 hours long.

We are looking for mature, flexible, open-minded, hardworking volunteers. Preferably 21+ and independent. We need caring individuals that are fine with tedious, dirty work. Working with vulnerable and disabled animals can be hard; mentally and physically. Volunteers need to be eager to work, self-motivated, respectful and most of all: flexible. Volunteers will be working both in team-setting as well as independently. Volunteers will get hot, wet, dirty & tired, but in the end the results of your work will be your reward!

Some level of Spanish is appreciated, but not required. Fluent English is mandatory.

All volunteers need to have an up-to-date tetanus vaccination and international health insurance.

Volunteer Accommodation

Volunteers who wish to live on-site can stay at the volunteer casita for $600 per month. This covers the upkeep & maintenance of the casita, including gas/water/electricity, wifi, rice & beans, coffee, laundry detergent, handsoap, and toilet paper.

Volunteers staying more than 3 months will stop paying their monthly contribution from month 4, as below:

$600 $600 $600 FREE

Our accommodation includes 3 volunteer bedrooms (2 beds each), 3 bathrooms, full kitchen with fridge/freezer & oven, washer/dryer, WiFi and a communal living area. Volunteers staying in the casita must be open to sharing a room with another volunteer of the same sex.

We provide rice and beans for our volunteers living on-site. If you want anything else to eat, you are welcome to purchase your additional groceries and cook your own meals.

About Sibu Wildlife Sanctuary

Sibu Wildlife Sanctuary is a sanctuary located in Nosara, Costa Rica, that specializes in lifetime care for wildlife with disabilities and for those that cannot survive in the wild.

The sanctuary’s work not only provides a safe home for those with no hope of a future in the wild, but also takes steps to improve their lives through specialized care focusing on specific disabilities and improving their movement and quality of life.

Physical injury to Costa Rica’s wildlife is most often caused by human encroachment. Deforestation, development and fragmentation of their natural habitat has led to frequent electrocutions on power lines, dog attacks and injury or death due to fast moving motor vehicles.

In order to give the animals that survive but have been handicapped the attention, care and safety they need, our goal is to:

  • Construct large habitats encasing natural surroundings, designed to meet the specific needs of handicapped residents
  • Incorporate daily physical therapy when required
  • Provide visual and auditory stimulation
  • Develop and research enrichment activities