There are possibly only a few places better than Costa Rica on earth to go fishing. Deep sea and off shore fishing there is among the best places I am told. I caught my first sailfish within the first few hours on the Pacific Ocean near Quepos on my first trip in 2011. Its weight was estimated to be around 120 pounds.
In my most recent trip to Costa Rica in 2013, I was fortunate once again to land some large fish on the Atlantic Ocean side out of Parismina. On day two, I caught my first tarpon with an estimated weight of 70 pounds. Later the same morning, I needed help landing a much larger tarpon estimated to be 170 pounds. After over 90 minutes being tugged around by this beast, we got it to the side of the boat. We could not get a great photo of the fish because no one had enough energy to raise it out of the water far enough to fully capture its size. Some might call this a big fish tale!!!!
But I did not expect to go to Costa Rica to catch a new mission or humanitarian cause. The Copey Learning Center is not near the Pacific or the Atlantic although both oceans border the country. The rural town of Copey is inland with a population of about 500 men, women, and children, and is well known for being the trout capital of the country and not marlins, sailfish, or tarpons.
When I visited the The Learning Center the first time, met the staff and listened to their vision, I caught it. It is a BIG vision for a small town. I brought the vision home and shared it with others. A year later, we have become a major source of help to the community of Copey. We are helping provide their children future opportunities in education and employment which otherwise may not come their way without The Learning Center. The fishing in Costa Rica is fantastic. But it was heard said once, “Come follow me, I will make you fishers of men (children)”. The “Friends of Copey” are landing some really big ones.
(Photo: Seidy-Founder of Learning Center; Anne-Teacher; and Arthur)