“Tropical Storm Nate created a state of emergency in Costa Rica and here in Monteverde. Cut off from the main town of Santa Elena by a washed out bridge, no electricity/internet/telephone, limited water and food supplies, and uncertainty about future landslides and safety of our persons and houses, our community has come together to support each other and safely navigate the challenges.”
Monteverde Friends School’s web page is the best way for you to learn about what has happened in Monteverde, Costa Rica, and how you can help. http://mfschool.org/nate/
“For the many friends who have asked how they can help, the most tangible support is financial donations to the school. We will have many families needing more financial support, as their livelihoods in the tourism industry are affected by the immediate close-down of visitors and possible longer-term reduction in tourism. We may also need to introduce new programs such as lunch, transport or daycare to continue supporting families in their recovery. Our commitment to provide access to bilingual Quaker education to ALL local families regardless of their financial situation remains strong; we will need more assistance to make this a reality.
Visit mfschool.org/donate to see donation options, and please consider a monthly pledge to provide ongoing support for families in need.”
The Monteverde Friends community was created when a number of Quakers, mainly from Fairhope, Alabama, were lead to leave the United States because of increased militarism. In 1949 four men were sentenced to prison for refusing to register for the military draft. Upon their release, in 1950 a number of members of the meeting decided to move to Costa Rica.
“They chose this tiny Central American country largely for its farming potential and pleasant climate, but they had also read the words of Pepe Figueres, the Costa Rican president at the time, inviting foreigners to come and help develop this country. Perhaps most attractive for the Friends though was the fact that Costa Rica had just abolished its own army and these pacifists felt they could live in peace here.” https://monteverdetours.com/history-of-monteverde.html
My family, and many others in Iowa Yearly Meeting (Conservative) have close ties with Monteverde Friends. Lucky (Standing) Guindon, my mother’s cousin and constant companion during their childhood, was one of the original group and lives there today. On October 14,1950, (67 years ago today) she and Wolf Guindon had a double wedding with my mother and father at Bear Creek Meeting.
In 2010, Mom, Dad, my sister Lisa and her children and I were able to visit Monteverde to celebrate the 60th wedding anniversary of the two couples.