Kauaʻi is set to receive grants from Office of Hawaiian Affairs (OHA) that will go toward projects meant to strengthen Native Hawaiians’ connections to family, culture and land.
OHA’s Board of Trustees reallocated funds within the budget to distribute $394,588 in grants to projects statewide.
“These grants are a part of OHA’s effort to increase its total community investment to benefit Native Hawaiians and the larger community,” said OHA Board Chair Carmen “Hulu” Lindsey. “So far in 2021, OHA has awarded more than $4.5 million in grants for ʻAhahui events, Iwi Kupuna and Repatriation, Homesteads, ʻOhana and Community Programs, COVID-19 Impact and Response, Kūlia, and Native Hawaiian Teacher Education. Statewide these grants will advance OHA’s strategic directions in the areas of education, health, housing and economic stability.”
The newly approved grants include a $50,000 award to a project on Kauaʻi that will help protect iwi kupuna at Polihale, an area where recreational use and illegal activities are desecrating Hawaiian burials.
For the first time in OHA’s 41-year history, a noncompetitive grant is being awarded to support Niʻihau residents with their COVID-19 and Native Hawaiian individual and ‘ohana-strengthening efforts.
The reallocation of funds allowed five previously approved, but partially funded grants to receive increases in funding.
The Homestead Community Development Corporation has been awarded an additional $21,905 to increase its award to $75,000 for its “Homestead Advocacy Education Project” which will support the capacity building of homestead associations by delivering homestead advocacy and educational seminars and inventory homestead priorities for advocacy.
The Hanalei River Heritage Foundation has been awarded an additional $20,801 to bring its total grant award to $30,000 for its “O Wailua Kuʻu Kulaiwi” project which will provide Hawaiian language and culture classes to Hawaiian families on Kauaʻi experiencing homelessness and housing insecurity to build resilience to overcome adversity.
On Oʻahu, the $148,775 OHA grant awarded to Salvation Army Family Treatment Services will help ‘ohana that have experienced family trauma, addiction and mental illness.
Also on Oʻahu, the Institute for Native Pacific Education and Culture has been awarded an additional $10,768 to increase its award to $134,309 for its “Kupu Ola Enhancement” project which will provide culture-based learning activities to Native Hawaiian students and families on the Wai‘anae Coast to further increase cultural grounding, parent engagement, sense of identity and academic achievement.
The Big Island Substance Abuse Council has been awarded an additional $118,832 bringing the total award to $150,000 for its “Therapeutic Living Re-Entry Program” which will provide therapeutic living treatment to adults previously incarcerated with the intention of providing wraparound services to support clients’ continued sobriety.
Hana Arts has been awarded an additional $23,507 bringing the total grant award to $50,000 for their “Empowering East Maui Youth through Arts and Culture Education” project.
The purpose of the Office of Hawaiian Affairs Grants Program is to support Hawaiʻi-based nonprofit organizations that have projects, programs, and initiatives that serve our Native Hawaiian lāhui in alignment with the strategic foundations, directions and outcomes of OHA’s Mana i Mauli Ola Strategic Plan.
To read OHA’s Mana i Mauli Ola 15-year Strategic Plan that is guiding the organization forward in its service to the Native Hawaiian community, visit www.oha.org/strategicplan.