Hi I’m Lydia, the Australian! My background is in Horticulture & Landscape Architecture. In “The Alchemist” Paulo Coelho sums up my passion, “If we improve on the present, what comes later will also be better”. I want to help people eat better for themselves and for our environment by linking public spaces with food production for a healthy, conscious, connected food future. I’d love to assist people and organizations to reduce their environmental impact because a healthy environment supports healthy people and visa versa. Rancho Mastatal is the next step in my journey and I can’t wait to learn amongst other passionate individuals. I love the outdoors (especially hiking and the ocean), writing and experimenting in the kitchen. A quirk of mine is waving with the peace sign!
Jessica Kay is from New Jersey, USA where she practices as a Licensed Massage Therapist, and on the weekends she is her husband’s disc jockey in their wedding entertainment company. Jessica has a BA in psychology from Western Connecticut State University where she also played forward on the college’s women’s basketball team from 2005-2007. Jessica and her husband Dan will both be part of Rancho Mastatal’s 2016 apprentice group with the intention to gain the knowledge and experience it will take to create an ecovillage in Costa Rica with like-minded people. Jessica would love to have the ability and opportunity to bring awareness and educate others to live a more health conscious and sustainable life. She is passionate about yoga, nutrition, DIY projects, animals, music, and being adventurous and trying new things! Jessica is very much looking forward to learning about fermentation and making her favorite beverage, Kombucha.
Dan Kay is from New Jersey USA and has earned a living as a Wedding Emcee/Dj for the past 12 years. He loves the outdoors whether it is mountain biking, building trails (one of his favorite), hiking, cliff jumping, slacklining and anything that keeps him on the go. Dan fell in love with Costa Rica when he was 16 and the raw compassion he continued to experience during the 6 weeks he had spent there. Dan wants to raise a family somewhere that people care about what they are feeding their children, live in a more community type atmosphere, and be surrounded by nature and people that are compassionate about living a healthy life. Dan plans to help the Ranch further their progress, to help whereever needed, absorb as much knowledge as he can and start or join a sustainable community in Costa Rica after completing his apprenticeship. He will be joining the apprentice team with his wife Jessica as their first step in creating a life for themselves and their future family in Costa Rica. Dan loves getting his hands dirty, learning new skills, teaching those skills to others and talking with anyone who wants to take the time to talk to him.
Ashley Chow is an oncology nurse with a degree from the University of Florida. Born and raised in Miami, Florida she loves the beach, marine life, and tropical weather. To her nothing is better than having your toes in the sand. Her special interest in holistic wellness and sustainable culture brought her to the ranch believing the mind and body must work together to achieve wellness. She is passionate about roller derby and roller disco; while she is taking a small disco break at the Ranch she still enjoys dancing on and off skates.
Dorothy is a young ecologist, yogi, and budding artist. During the summer before her junior year at University, she stumbled across the term "permaculture" and was immediately hooked. Finding her stride in chaos's opportunities, Dorothy proceeded to work in agriculture at BU Acres Farm, ZigZag Farm in Oregon, and finally Rancho Mastatal. With a degree in ecological sciences, and an unbridled curiosity for the natural world, Dorothy plans to use the principles of ecosystems and humanity's need for resources to facilitate stronger, more beneficial relationships between the two. At Rancho Mastatal, she is delving into the science, study, and practice of apiculture with both African Honeybees and stingless bees. The 2016 honey harvest is sure to reflect a plethora of newly planted Asteraceae and Meliaceae-- if proof can indeed be found in the flavor. If she's not hanging out with bees, Dorothy can be found playing ultimate frisbee, painting, free-styling, or running the trails of La Cangreja.