30 Hawai‘i Nonprofits to Receive $721K in Food Security Grants

August 16, 2020, 7:48 AM HST · Updated August 17, 5:51 AM
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Hana Build. Photo Credit: Ma Ka Hana Ka Ike.

More than 30 nonprofits will receive a total of $721,739 in grants, funded by the Office of Hawaiian Affairs, to support community-based food security efforts in Native Hawaiian communities statewide.

The grants support Hawaiʻi Community Foundation’s Strong Funds for each county, including Kaua‘i Strong, O‘ahu Strong, Maui County Strong and Hawai‘i Island Strong, which were created by HCF to build community resilience by providing resources for disaster preparedness, response and recovery.

Nonprofits were chosen based on their ability to address COVID-related food needs while integrating aloha ‘āina, sustainability and local agriculture into their programs. The food security grant funding comes from a portion of the $3-million Emergency Relief Package passed by the OHA Board of Trustees in May 2020.

“In this time of immense need, we are grateful that the Office of Hawaiian Affairs has made it possible for community-based organizations across our state to increase food security efforts and also perpetuate Native Hawaiian practices that will ensure our state’s resiliency for the future,” said Micah Kāne, Chief Executive Officer and President of HCF.

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The grants will fund programs and projects that perpetuate cultural and sustainable farming practices, provide safe places for families to farm and fish, expand production of traditional Hawaiian food and medicine crops for donation and sale, and distribute food or agricultural products to some of the state’s most vulnerable populations.

HFC grant recipients include the following Maui organizations:

  • Hawaiʻi Farmers Union Foundation
  • Hawaiʻi Taro Farm LLC
  • Hui No Ke Ola Pono
  • Hui O Kuapā
  • Ke Kula o Piʻilani
  • Kīpahulu ʻOhana, Inc.
  • Ma Ka Hana Ka ʻIke Building Program
  • Nohoʻana Farm
  • Sustainable Molokaʻi
  • Lahaina Restoration Foundation

A full list of grant awardees and their programs can be found here.

“The pandemic has highlighted the need for sustainability and the importance of locally-produced food,” said OHA CEO Sylvia Hussey. “These grants will provide crucial support to community-based nonprofits, farmers and producers across the state. In turn, Native Hawaiian communities will be able to access fresh, local food to keep their ‘ohana nourished in the near term, and resources that will allow them to perpetuate ‘āina-based sustainable practices and Native Hawaiian traditions in the long term.”

OHA partnered with HCF to ensure that its food security grants could be awarded and released into the community quickly during this time of incredible need.

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