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Costa Rica 2005 (page 3 of 4)

We were able to visit a shantytown, known as Bajo de Meco, three times to play with the kids there. This photo shows the landslides that destroyed three of the 110 homes a few days after our first visit.

This man (in blue) explains how he survived the landslide that destroyed his home. On the same day he learned that his father was killed by robbers in Nicaragua.

After the landslide, displaced people began rebuilding on the area the kids had used as a playground (in photo below). The kids then moved to an area outside this barbed wire fence that was, unfortunately, full of broken glass. Here, Abigail shuffles cards behind her back.

All of the families in the shantytown are Nicaraguan migrant farm workers, who may also find other work in town. Most kids must go barefoot in order to preserve their shoes for school.

After a game of futbol, Luke attracted a small band of admirers.

The kids in the shantytown have access to Costa Rican health care and attend the local public school (which requires a dangerous walk on a narrow, curving section of the highway). The homes, however, have no electricity and very limited water pressure (one 3/4" PVC pipe serves the whole community). Filling this pool with water was a real treat. Most homes cook with kerosene, some with wood fires. A few homes ran televisions from car batteries.

This two-meter long fer-de-lance bends the machete of its killer. This man was clearing a field for the kids to play (and Steve was helping him) when he came across this rather common but deadly snake.

on to page four (of four) of Costa Rica 2005 photos