Valentina’s adventure began in 2009 when her dad moved from the United States to build his dream home in the Costa Rican jungle. Little did she know her decision to tag long would be the first step in a life-changing journey to save Costa Rica’s parrots! Valentina was nineteen at the time and had yet to plot a course for her future. She had worked at a pet store in the United States where she purchased an African Grey parrot she named Ujoo – this little fellow captured her heart and sparked her love for all exotic birds! Once settled in Costa Rica, she stumbled upon a breeding facility and purchased a Scarlet Macaw. The poor conditions at the facility, and the level of neglect that their birds suffered, had a big impact on Valentina. She left wanting to learn more about the proper care of birds, so she spent a considerable amount of time volunteering at a local rescue center and visiting several others. This is how she discovered the direction she wanted her life, and career to take! Valentina started researching parrots and meeting with government officials, biologists, and other rescue center experts. She quickly realized that though there were several rescue centers for the endangered macaws, none existed for the Yellow Nape Amazons, which became critically endangered primarily due to the destruction of their natural habitat and the illegal removal of their chicks for the pet industry. Valentina knew Costa Rica needed a program concentrating on the rescue and rehabilitation of the Yellow Nape Amazons as well as other parrots – and so the Parrot Rescue Center of Costa Rica was born, receiving their license to legally operate as a rescue center in April of 2013.