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Photos: In Costa Rica, kids learn at a young age the importance of voting

April 8, 2014

HEREDIA CENTRO – Kids of all ages joined the electoral party this Sunday to cast their symbolic votes for president in national children’s elections. Kids elections offer a hands-on lesson on the Costa Rican democratic process in several special cantons across the country. The Tico Times joined the Santa Cecilia Bilingual School in Heredia for this patriotic day.

The children’s election is modeled after the country’s official election, held the same day. It is open to those under 18. One goal of Costa Rica’s children’s elections is to spark interest at an early age and curb voter abstention.

Children also volunteered to be guides and fiscals at the voting booths, and they explained to voters the process once in the booth. Teachers guided and supervised the process.

Results of the children’s elections will be made public after 6 p.m., although they have no influence on the official count.

Here’s a photo report:

Andrés Madrigal/The Tico Times
Voters are required to mark with an X their choice for president. Andrés Madrigal/The Tico Times

 

Andrés Madrigal/The Tico Times
First step in the voting process: Get registered at the entrance of the school. Andrés Madrigal/The Tico Times

 

Andrés Madrigal/The Tico Times
Moisés, 10, and Joram, 11, volunteer as observers during the children's election at Santa Cecilia High School in Heredia, on April 6, 2014. Andrés Madrigal/The Tico Times

 

Andrés Madrigal/The Tico Times
Enrique, 16, casts his vote. Andrés Madrigal/The Tico Times

 

Andrés Madrigal/The Tico Times
José Pablo, 9, shows his party's colors and the water-based tattoo proving he voted. Andrés Madrigal/The Tico Times

 

Andrés Madrigal/The Tico Times
An added treat that adults don't get after voting: a water-based tattoo. Andrés Madrigal/The Tico Times

 

Andrés Madrigal/The Tico Times
The tattoo reads "I decided to vote." Andrés Madrigal/The Tico Times

 

Andrés Madrigal/The Tico Times
Jackeline and Jazmine, both 12, take their turns as fiscals. Andrés Madrigal/The Tico Times

 

Andrés Madrigal/The Tico Times
Done! Andrés Madrigal/The Tico Times

 

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