Cartago Affiliate

"First God helped us, then Habitat helped us, and then our neighbors who donated furniture, appliances, and doors to compliment our home." --Oscar Alberto Ramirez Calvo, Habitat for Humanity homeowner in Cartago

The Cartago affiliate started building its first houses in January 2001, in the cites of Cartago and Paraiso. It also includes the towns of Turrialba, Cervantes, and La Union. After its first year, 16 houses had been completed and 3 more were in progress.
Cartago was the original capital of Costa Rica, and one of the first settled communities in Costa Rica. It is located 14 miles east of San José in the Valle de Guarco and has a population of about 120,000.


Cartago's low temperatures usually range from 54-58° F and highs from 73-79° F. January through April are the driest months with less than 2 inches (30 mm) of rain per month. From May until August, 5-8 inches (130-200 mm) fall per month. In September and October expect around 10 inches (250 mm) per month. In November and December, rainfall slows to 2.5-4.5 inches (50-110 mm) per month. Humidity is generally around 80 percent.

Recent Events:

During the World Leader's Build in August, 5 houses were built in one week in Paraiso thanks to the help of several international and local brigades, and a generous US$25,000 donation from Citibank.

A Homeowner's success:

Marcel Benza Cedeno lives with her daughter, Jocelyn, who is disabled, and has the degenerative disease Batten. During the World Leader’s Build in August 2001, Venus Kornelsun, a local entrepreneur and owner of Propokodusa Chicken, one of the largest chicken producers in Costa Rica, and his family helped build Marcel’s house. This experience opened his eyes to her need for a bathtub, rather than the standard shower Habitat provides. He generously donated a bathtub to enable Marcel to bathe her daughter more easily.

"For me, it had been only a dream to be able to bathe my daughter in a bathtub. Then I was able to make my dream a reality. To give it to my daughter wasn't a luxury but a necessity. To see how there are people that give you a hand with what you need is an beautiful experience. For me, having this family working in my house without me giving anything in exchange was the most beautiful experience." --Marcel Benza Cedeno

Contact Habitat in Cartago

Regional Partner: Helen Diaz (email: )

Tel/fax: (506) 591-9867
Apdo. 1903, Cartago
300 norte del Banco Credito Agrícola de Cartago, contiguo a la casa de la Cultura (segundo piso)