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Posted by iftekhar On October - 19 - 2020 0 Comment

With the many challenges facing the world, what should FWOP and its partners do to contribute to solutions? FWOP can turn around local areas, states, and nations. Our roles may be socio-economic initiatives that challenge typical ways of organizing our world – what Karl Mannheim called ‘utopia’ – realistic futures to work toward.

Costa Rica: ‘Utopia’
In 2017, under the leadership of Dr. Eliecer Vargas, the FWOP Summit was held at CATIE (https://catie.ac.cr/en/).  Since then two major initiatives have emerged. First, under Rotary leadership (Karen McDaniels) and funding, the RETUS (https://www.retustours.com/ ), a women’s business network focused on sustainable rural tourism, has become much stronger. Second, FWOP met Diving With A Purpose (DWP) (https://divingwithapurpose.org/) at the FWOP Summit in Nashville in 2018.  As a result, DWP has become a partner with Centro Comunitario de Buceo Embajadores y Embajadoras del Mar in Costa Rica’s Southern Caribbean training center for young people in diving and tourism.

After the seminars in Florida and Costa Rica in 2019, a seminar has been planned for 2021 in Costa Rica. Now with nation government interest, the goal is establish a sister DWP in Costa Rica. Coral restoration, sustainable tourism, and jobs are the major goals for a new organization. It became clear that RETUS and Centro Comunitario share some common goals. Recently the Butterfly Business which is part of RETUS has set up a satellite office near Centro Comunitario in southwest Costa Rica.

On a smaller scale, Rotary has helped up four aquaponics units near CATIE. Locals have added two more units and some restaurants are considering establishing units on site. With the renovation of Sustainable House with Rotary funds,  RETUS how has business office at House and a place to meet.

 Is Costa Rica a sustainable model for other nations?   As one reviews various global indices, Costa Rica ranks high on such criteria as transparency, ecology preservation, social welfare, education of its youth and energy policy. ( https://www.visitcostarica.com/en/costa-rica/sustainability)  Under Mannheim’s definition of utopia – it may be  argued that Costa Rica is a ‘utopia’ and gives overall direction for many nations. Is RETUS a mini-utopia?  

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