Peñas Blancas is a Costa Rican community of 2,000 people about three hours south of the capital San José. One paved road serves the town, which is known for its sugar cane. Most of the men work in the sugar cane factory; most of the women stay at home.
“Overall, people here have very limited access to economic resources,” says Alyssa Taffaro ’13, who has been in Peñas Blancas since March as a community economic development volunteer for the Peace Corps. “But they tend to maintain a positive outlook on life and are able to find beauty and value in its simplicity.”