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Mission Complete: Puerto Rico 2024

The mission trip in Puerto Rico this summer was conducted in early June, attended by various state, national ambassadors and organization leaders.

We traveled to the vibrant area near San Juan, Puerto Rico to participate in the annual Beauties for a Cause mission trip.

Each 2023-2024 state and regional ambassador had the opportunity to join this trip based on the annual charitable giving campaign for the B4ACUSA Foundation. Friends, families, businesses, and supporters donated on behalf of the ambassadors.

Volunteers attending include the reigning Miss Earth USA Beatrice Millan-Windorski of Wisconsin, reigning Miss Earth USA Fire Sydney Hella of Colorado, 2023 state titleholders Jaimye Lynn Wininger of South Dakota, Eugenia Zhang of Connecticut, as well as Organization President Laura Clark and Nonprofit Director Ariel Sorensen.

Volunteers dedicated time with the local Para la Naturaleza nonprofit organization to aid in island clean up and brush removal. The organization manages visitor centers and natural protected areas, including Hacienda Buena Vista in Ponce, Hacienda La Esperanza in Manati and Cabezas de San Juan in Fajardo, among others.

The group also experienced the wonder and beauty of the area, including a Bioluminescence Bay tour via kayak. "Bio Bays" are bodies of water where microscopic organisms called dinoflagellates grow in quantities large enough to produce a "glow-in-the-dark" effect. When you paddle or splash the water, these organisms shine in a neon blue-green color, making the water look as if it was lit by billions of glowing stars. There are only five ecosystems in the world where the concentration of these dinoflagellates is high enough to be considered a bioluminescent bay, and Puerto Rico is home to three of them!

The final excursion was a half day trip to explore El Yunque National Rainforest. Para la Natureleza provided a private guided two hour tour, explaining the unique characteristics, wildlife, landscape and challenges of the rainforest.

Characterized by its lush and diverse landscape, abundant rainfall, and unique topography, these visits will provide our group the opportunity to witness biodiversity, flora and fauna, as well as glimpses of the endangered Puerto Rican parrot and the Coquí tree frog.

Down time was spent shopping in Old San Juan and relaxing on the beach near Condado. Puerto Rico's culture is vibrant and colorful, enjoying music and dancing in the streets! The most delicious food includes unique recipes of bananas and plantains. A local favorite is mofongo, a fried and mashed plantain-based dish.

In addition to exploring a beautiful and unique territory of the United States, ambassadors expressed their appreciation for time together in sisterhood as volunteers for Beauties for a Cause.

If you are interested in being a part of our mission or hosting a mission in your city, please contact the organization today!

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