The COVID 19 pandemic has caused an urgency for food distribution to rural areas like Ka`u. Hana Laulima Lahui O Ka`u has been instrumental in rallying volunteers to deploy regular food distributions from community agencies like Hawaii County Economic Opportunity Council, Kamehameha Schools, HOPE Services Hawaii and Liliuokalani Trust.
We are an important point of contact for the three Ka`u communities of Pahala, Naalehu and Ocean View.
We are also a member of Big Island VOAD (Voluntary Organizations Active in Disaster) serving as an important community hub in times of natural disaster on Hawaii Island.
Kahea Mai Ka ‘Aina is an intercession culture-based ‘ohana camp, serving Ka`u families for over 10 years. The camp serves learners from kindergarten through grade 12 and their families.
The camps range from one week to three days. Most of the families are from Ka’u. However, we also work with learners in foster care residing outside of Ka’u.
Normally we have 25 participants with their families.
The goal of this program is that students will know more about Ka’u, their Native Hawaiian culture and how to become self-sufficient. Students are given plants to begin their own gardens for their families. A key module in the training camp is learning to prepare an imu to provide food for their own families.
The Ka`u Native Hawaiian Cultural Center plans include a stage and a modest building with a multipurpose room equipped with folding walls to provide spaces for classrooms, dining, and meetings. The center will also have a museum, gift shop, commercial kitchen and public restrooms.
Native Hawaiian botanical gardens on site will cultivate native and indigenous plants used by Hawaiians for na mea hana laulima (handicrafts) traditional Hawaiian tools, agricultural products and Hawaiian seasonings for cooking items from the garden.
Ka`u artisans will create gift products such as arts, crafts and Hawaiian food items to sell in the gift shop.
Native Ka`u kupuna will perpetuate the stories and history of Ka`u passed verbally from generation to generation by their ancestors.