Central donation hub created for Maui wildfire survivors; here are the latest needs
A coordinated effort between the state and Maui organizations and nonprofits will begin collecting, storing and inventorying supplies donated to Maui County to support victims of the wildfires in Kula and Lahaina.
During a press conference on Monday afternoon, Hawaiʻi Lt. Gov. Sylvia Luke asked that donations not be shipped directly to Maui County unless there is someone on island to receive it. Additionally, officials are asking that items not be dropped off at any of the shelters set up throughout central Maui to assist evacuees.
Starting Tuesday, the drop-off site for donations will be relocated to Sears, located at 275 W. Ka‘ahumanu Ave., Suite 1000, in Kahului. Donations will be accepted from 8 a.m. to 4 p.m.
Laksmi Abraham, Executive Assistant for the Office of the Mayor in Maui County, said the county has partnered with Hawai‘i Food Alliance and provided 1 million pounds of food, water and supplies to the Lāhainā community.
People impacted by the fires can pick up supplies at two distribution sites:
- Lāhainā Gateway, 325 Keawe St.
- Napili Market, 5095 Napilihau St.
With the lack of power, storing fresh food is difficult. West Maui residents are in need of ice, coolers and propane.
Clothing is no longer needed at this time. List of supplies most in demand are:
- Nonperishable food items (protein and vegetable items)
- Handwashing stations
- Water totes to transport water
- Outdoor sinks
- Portable charging stations and portable charging devices
- Semi permanent or permanent tents
A warehouse operated by the State Department of Accounting and General Services will be used to store, sort and inventory the goods that are on Maui and will be sent out to the public and out to the communities that are clearly in need.
As the county continues to work to restore connectivity, Elizabeth Songvilay, AT&T Director of External Affairs for Hawai‘i, said the company will ship loaner phones with unlimited service to Maui as many of the victims lost their mobile devices in the fires.
AT&T will be providing then to nonprofit organizations so they can be given to people who need to connect with their loved ones. The phones will be charged and activated and will remain on Maui for as long as needed.
Shan Tsutsui, Senior Vice President and Chief Operating Officer of Mahi Pono, a farming company on Maui, will help continue the efforts by the county to accept the hundreds of containers of donations currently en route to Maui and ensuring those items are maintained, restored and redistributed to the right places at the right time.
Monetary donations can be given at:
Sen. Brian Schatz reminds those impacted by the fires to sign up for the Individual Assistance program through the Federal Emergency Management Administration. There are 90 FEMA workers on Maui specifically on island to help with this effort in getting everyone eligible enlisted.
Those interested in donating goods, volunteering or offering support can visit mauinuistrong.info.