Our Plan To Help Hurricane Otto Victims In Costa Rica

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Custom furniture made to order in Costa Rica.

An individual bed, bunk beds, a double bed, a closet or two, and a kitchen cabinet — these are the things we would like to make for families in Costa Rica whose homes were hit by Hurricane Otto.

Our friend Flor in Upala, who works for the ministry of health, sent us the pictures below in her last update. This home belongs to these two girls and their family. Here you can see part of their hurricane clean-up as well as the girls’ room — completely emptied. The girls lost everything they owned.

Flor lost everything too. In a recent group update she wrote: “the fridge is working, more or less, but the furniture is gone. My bed, the kitchen cabinets… gone” Flor has yet to ask that we send a single thing for her. She sends us these pictures and just wants to know if we can send some beds her neighbors with kids.

If we can, we would love to go with a gallon of paint and some new curtains for the girls’ room. I can pitch in the curtains myself, I have plenty of fabric. We would like to give them bunk beds and each girl her own little closet.

Our plan is simple:

  • Create furniture designs in that will work in multiple homes.
  • Raise money on GoFundMe to pay for the project.
  • Make beds, closets and kitchen cabinets according to what is needed.
  • Deliver the new furniture to Upala to replace some of the pieces families lost to the flood waters.

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The families we would like to offer new custom furniture to first are some of the poorest in Upala. They live in an area of government housing that was inundated with flood waters.

Since many of these houses were made by the government they are all the same design and the rooms have the same measurements. These rooms are very small, which is why we made our designs as simple and as compact as possible.

The Ruined Contents Of Homes In Upala, Costa Rica

The picture above shows the streets near these homes in the days after Hurricane Otto touched down in Upala. As you can see many families were forced to take everything out of their homes, much of their furniture and belongings ruined by the water.

Many people in this area had the same melamine cabinets in their kitchens. When the water hit these cabinets the wood particles swelled, the glue gave way, and the cabinets began to crumble apart.


Though they may be simple and inexpensive, the solid-wood pieces we propose to make will be a beautiful feature in any household for many years to come.

This is the best way we can think of to help our friends and neighbors get their homes back after the disaster. By using the skills and tools we have we hope to help replace some of their most essential furniture and help these families recover.

If our plan sounds like something you could stand behind please check out our GoFundMe campaign. Any contribution would be greatly appreciated, but even if you can’t contribute at this time you can help us reach our goal by sharing the campaign on Facebook and Twitter.

The good news is we are almost half-way to our first fundraising goal, which would get the first load of furniture made and delivered to Upala. We hope to reach $2,000 by the first of the year so we can send a brand new bedroom to those girls, along with other much needed pieces for a family in Upala.


Mimi Mudd

Mimi Mudd

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About Me

When I was 15 I got my first job working at a marmolería. It was hard, dusty work! But I got the chance to learn many things. I fell in love with woodworking and for many years it was my dream to own my own woodworking business. I started Custom Furniture Costa Rica in 2015 and it has given me the chance to live my dream and so much more. I’m Andres Zamora, and this is my art and my passion.

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¿Te gustaría saber qué muebles pueden hacer que tu sala se vea más grande? ¿Qué tal una forma de duplicar el espacio útil en una habitación? ¿Podría usar algunas soluciones creativas de almacenamiento en la cocina y el baño? Encontrarás todo eso y más en nuestra guía, Diseño y Decoración para Espacios Pequeños.