Friday, January 15, 2016

Proyecto Asis Wildlife Center, Cecily Martin

Proyecto Asis Wildlife Rescue Center holds a very special place in my heart and it was definitely the highlight of the trip, as I am a huge animal lover! Proyecto Asis is located in La Fortuna and they are doing a tremendous job rescuing and rehabilitating injured and abandoned animals. We started off our visit with a tour and Alvaro Del Castillo, Director of Proyecto Asis and son of the founder, guided us through the center. Alvaro was very knowledgeable about the animals and extremely passionate about their conservation. He made the tour fun and interactive, by not only quizzing us on what we had been learning, but also by placing one of our classmates in a spider monkey cage and asking how he would feel if he was kept in captivity the rest of his life. Some of the animals at the center were exotic pets that were held in captivity, which were later confiscated by the authorities and brought to the center for rehabilitation. Alvaro explained the importance of the center’s goal of wildlife preservation and its efforts in enabling the animals to be released in to the wild again. Proyecto Asis is not a zoo, so visitors shouldn’t expect to see a great variety of animals, but even so we were able to see different kinds of monkeys, macaws, crocodiles, white-lipped peccarys and other beautiful animals. I was fascinated about learning about each animal’s unique story, including where they came from, why they’re there and how long they might stay at the center. I was surprised to find that Proyecto Asis earns it’s funds through donations from visitors. Proyecto Asis relies a lot on word of mouth advertising, so perhaps they should expand their outreach though social media marketing to help raise awareness of the wonderful work they are doing, by continuing to draw more visitors.

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