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About CEA

CEA is a space dedicated to helping children in the La Guacima area of Costa Rica learn and experience fun activities. Access to these opportunities is strongly determined by location and income in Costa Rica, and CEA seeks to make them more readily available to all.  We currently offer free tutoring, martial arts classses, a public volunteer-powered library, movie nights, and a summer camp.  

CEA's model is about collaboration: community members help determine the program and activities at the center, and participate in its operation.  As a result, CEA is a unique mixing place where children and parents from some of Costa Rica's most privileged families interact with and work together with families that have very little resources: as equals, each contributing in their own way to the community. 

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About the Space

Our ¾ acre campus is located in La Guácima, Alajuela, Costa Rica.  We are 400m south of the entrance to Los Reyes and 200m south of the public school, Once de Abril.

The property hosts four buildings: the main activity center (with a martial arts dojo, lending library, game room, and community meeting space), a multiuse building for movies and crafts, a covered sports area, and a two story house for visiting volunteers.

CEA abuts a protected forest, and we frequently have "visitors" from the forest: monkeys, toucans and more.  The monkeys like to steal the bananas and mangos on the property!

Our Community

CEA works with kids and their caregivers throughout the area.  We are located in walking distance to one of the wealthiest communities in Costa Rica, and one of its low resource communities. We draw from both, as well from families in other nearby towns and provinces.   


How CEA Started

The project is led by Alexia Muchisu Wendel. After Alexia moved to the community with Steve and their children, she quickly realized the need for a lending library, a space for children to learn and play, and a location for all community members to share their traditions and cultures. 

Alexia had long planned to setup programs for her community – especially with a library for kids. In the Fall of 2022 Alexia and Steve found a wonderful location to house it. The Wendels finished renovating the property in February 2023, and made it available for CEA to use in March.

We are a US 501(c)(3) non-profit organization.  

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