Grants Awarded for Maui Cord Blood Banking and MEDB
Kaiser Permanente Hawaiʻi today announced that two local organizations were awarded grants that will support health equity and economic security in Maui County.
The Hawaiʻi Cord Blood Bank received a grant of $27,500 to expand Maui’s cord blood banking program and allow for the collection, shipping and public banking of cord blood from newborns born at Maui Memorial Medical Center.
The organization addresses a critical health disparity by improving access to cord blood transplants in multi-ethnic communities. Cord blood contains stem cells that can be used to provide effective treatment to patients with otherwise fatal diseases, including leukemia and sickle cell disease.
Members of Hawaiʻi’s ethnically diverse community who donate their newborns’ cord blood to a national public registry through HCBB have the potential to improve access to life-saving cord blood transplants for multi-ethnic patients living around the world.
The Maui Economic Development Board received $20,000 to provide programming that will serve 45,000 students and teachers statewide.
The program aims to increase student interest in science and technology fields and improve self-confidence, social skills and ethical responsibility. Twenty-three schools will benefit from MEDB’s educational program, which will improve the economic security and employability of Maui’s youth, especially in low-
income and disadvantaged communities.
Participants will be encouraged to innovate and gain hands-on experience with student-driven approaches.
“At Kaiser Permanente, we believe that total health — caring for the mind, body and spirit — should be available to everyone,” said Frank Richardson, vice president Legal, Government and Community Relations Kaiser Permanente Hawaiʻi. “We’re excited to partner with Hawaiʻi Cord Blood Bank and the Maui Economic Development Board, two organizations striving to increase access to services in communities that need them most.”