WHY IS THIS PROJECT IMPORTANT?
Plants give us the air that we breathe, the foods that sustain us, the medicines to cure and soothe our ailments, the materials to build our homes, shade from the hot sun, beauty, inspiration and so much more. We simply could NOT survive without plants on our planet. Botanical Gardens are plant museums. They are not luxuries, but necessities.
WHY AM I PASSIONATE ABOUT THIS?
I am a Horticulturist by profession, with a B.S. degree and over 30 years of well-rounded experience. I love making gardens and have created many, many private ones. But my true passion is PUBLIC gardens - Gardens For the People. I have been working diligently for over 6 years on my proposal & business / development plan for a botanical garden in Costa Rica. I have spent my personal money as well as an estimated 4,000 - 5,000 hours researching and writing my proposal and business plan, along with numerous other associated tasks to make this a reality.
I lived in Costa Rica for almost 10 years and this is where I want to establish and develop this botanical garden - in a small town called Quepos, along the central Pacific coast. It is greatly needed there. Quepos is a tourist town and draws over 300,000 visitors/year. This very small country is a plant paradise. Within its 12 eco-climatic zones grow over 11,000 species of native plants! (That's alot!!)! There are thousands more exotic (non-native) plants that thrive there. Only 3 public botanical gardens currently exist in the country that serve to preserve and to display this wealth of flora. (The U.S., in comparison, has over 500 public gardens.) All of the 3 existing gardens are a long 3 1/2 hour drive from Quepos, far off the beaten path and difficult for the public to access - especially the locals who don't have cars. A very accessible site is a number one priority for this new botanical garden.
I have 10 years of experience in non-profit botanical garden establishment, development and management, but I want this garden in Costa Rica to be a for- profit commercial venture, where investors can expect a return on their investment. I believe it can be done much more efficiently and effectively as a commercial endeavor. It will be a major tourist attraction, of course, but will also be highly beneficial to this rural community in so many ways including educationally, economically and environmentally.
WHY DO I NEED YOUR FUNDING ASSISTANCE?
I am currently in the U.S and revving up my search for investors, so I am seekiing funding through this site to help me to offset the costs of this search. Finding this special investor is a challenge, but I know they're out there. Perhaps it is someone who, like me, loves Costa Rica and its people or has a passion for plants and gardens - especially tropical plants. But, I must and will persevere!
My biggest expense is for international travel to personally meet and present my project proposal and business plans to prospective investors. There are business leaders in Costa Rica who know me and have recently expressed interest in learning more about my project. This networking is essential, especially in Costa Rica. Garnering community and business support at this start-up stage is key to its success.
Other costs that your funding assistance will provide building is the building of a website and contracting someone who can get my project out on social media.
WHAT'S IN IT FOR YOU?
Costa Rica is considered a "developing" country, where I assure you, these types of facilites are especially needed. This garden will last for generations to come and will be the pride of the local community. Your assistance at this VERY INITIAL stage of my business start-up is essential. When you donate $50 or more, you will receive one free admission to this garden when it is open. Patience has been and still is key. This is a grand project, but it will be well worth the wait. Estimated time for development is 3-4 years.
The garden will be self-supporting. To supplement its income it will also house its own coconut oil production facility and will proudly sell its own brand of virgin, organic, cold-pressed Costa Rican Coconut Oil (a rare commodity) in the garden's gift shop. Donations of $150 and above will get free admission plus a gratis jar of coconut oil. But yes, that means that you will have to come to Costa Rica. This could be good incentive for that needed vacation and to see what your small, initial donation has helped bring to fruition. It will be a little piece of Heaven here on Earth! It will make you proud to have been a part of its inception.
I am happy to answer any questions that you have or send you more information about this exciting and worthwhile project. You can e-mail me at [email protected]
Many, many thanks for your interest and your support.