The center where we all live (professors and their families, our coordinator and interns, and students) is Rainforest Alliance certified. We’ve slowly been learning about what this means and what things we can and can’t do in order to abide by the guidelines to keep the certification (as an auditor can come at any time and revoke it). The rainforest alliance is an NGO “working to conserve biodiversity and ensure sustainable livelihoods by transforming land-use practices” …environmental jargon—it basically has this certification program to promote socially responsible management of institutions and farms and helps to educate people about what it means to live sustainably. Here at the center we don’t have any water heaters (I will never get used to freezing showers—no matter how hot it is outside. I’ve recently descended to just leaning my head back and washing my hair. It’s gross, really. I just don’t know what else to do), use only florescent and motion activated lights, no clothes dryers, eat only food bought from Atenas, hire only local workers, use only biodegradable cleaning products (including for our own bodies. Another hurdle. Today I bought biodegradable baby disinfectant instead of laundry detergent. What’s baby disinfectant?). We also have this bike that you ride and it charges a battery that you can plug things into (!!) and the small farm/orchard we have here is totally organic. And new baby piggies just came to feed our compost to! 

Some swingin' on the porch

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