Seedlings ready for planting

Research & Education



The Pierella Rainforest Reclamation Project began with a scientist who fell in love with the rainforest. Science is at the heart of our organization, keeping the organization focused on building scientific knowledge and developing best practices toward reforestation and sustainability.

We value collaboration and interdisciplinary learning to enhance our work, building back the rainforest one hectare at a time. We are committed to training the next generation of young scientists in sustainability science while providing opportunities for undergraduate, graduate and post-graduate scientists and engineers of all ages to study in Costa Rica.

Central to our work is returning developed land back to the rainforest, nurturing the process of second growth. This affords us a natural “lab” and presents us with more areas of research than we could possibly manage as we work to continuously study and improve the myriad aspects of the reforestation process. Best practices in this area are evolving quickly, and we will make sure that the results of this work will be shared.

We focus on five main aspects of a resilient, thriving rainforest: biodiversity, ecosystem services, wildlife corridors, sustainability, and carbon capture. We do this by inviting collaboration with other scientists (seasoned and novice) to engage in small experiments in reforestation, community engagement and collaboration, at a living lab. We look for undergraduate and graduate students to hone their scientific thinking and skills with us toward the shared effort of understanding how reforestation not only benefits biodiversity, but the human experience and livelihoods of the local community as well. All in an effort to build a climate safe, sustainable world.

The Pierella Rainforest Reclamation Project believes that education is lifelong, no matter what age you are, you can help build a better world for tomorrow’s generation. We engage learners from early childhood through adulthood. Our network of volunteers, scientists, and educators design learning experiences to help bring the rainforest alive both remotely and up-close. We are always looking for volunteers to help bring a new perspective, ideas, and opportunities to the reforestation of our tropical rainforests.


The success of Pierella Rainforest Reclamation Project will be measured not in days or weeks, but in decades. We want to ensure that we hand off this planet to future generations in the best condition we can, and that means more than just planting trees. It means that equal to the reforestation and research work we do today, we must also plant knowledge and a love for the planet with the coming generation. We want to help inspire the next generation of scientists and ecologists to carry on our work.

Our vision is to provide healthy rainforest and educational opportunities in perpetuity so all the generations to come have access to the amazing world of the rainforest and that it inspires them the way it does us.

University of Michigan student teaches local Costa Rican boy how to measure a tree for carbon capture stats.
Students measure all the trees in the plot.

Pierella Rainforest Reclamation Project believes that in order to protect the rainforest, we must bring the magic and wonder of the natural world into the hearts and minds of all people. Tropical Rainforests are home to some of the most diverse ecosystems on the planet. The human impact and changing climate are putting these vulnerable forests and the creatures that live within, at great risk. This makes Education a central component of the work here at PRPRP. Our hope is to bring the rainforest to life to both the young child and adult through both formal and informal learning opportunities. Education at PRFRP is designed to connect the learner to the unique features of tropical rainforests through our partner, Pierella Ecological Gardens, and encourage pro-environmental action from wherever the learner calls home. 

Our vision is to build Educational Programs that will inspire conservation and rehabilitation actions across the world’s forests, starting at Pierella Ecological Gardens. We are currently building a student-centered curriculum for kindergarten to eighth-graders for public, private, and home-schooling teachers to use that are aligned with Common Core, Next Generation Science Standards, and focused on STEAM learning domains. We’re building partnerships with universities to give emerging scholars and professionals opportunities to further their research in environment and sustainability topics.

In the future, we hope to provide science immersion and study abroad programs for high-school to college students at Pierella Ecological Gardens, training new scientists and building
Spanish-speaking skills. 

As a volunteer-led and run organization, we’re always looking for motivated volunteers to help us achieve our goals. If you’re interested in helping build our education programs or would like to learn more, please reach out to

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