Maui Behavioral Health Resources’ Pūlama nā ‘Ohana Team helps wildfire survivors with everyday needs

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The Pūlama nā ‘Ohana team from Maui Behavioral Health Resources has been working in the community for the past several months to provide assistance to those effected by the Maui wildfires.

Maui Behavioral Health Resources

Their goal is to help fire survivors right where they’re at, with what they need at the time. Team members provide assistance with activities like completing paperwork, replacing documentation, packing, moving, transportation, providing referrals to financial, medical, legal or childcare services, and delivering food and supplies.

“I delivered about 1,000 pounds of ice last week, and I’m getting to know everyone in the community. They know they can trust me if they want to talk,” said Su-Lynn “Pohai” Kaihewalu, a care coordinator on the team.

“Mental Health is everything right now,” said care coordinator Adri Haia. Many fire survivors are still in “survival mode,” making it difficult to concentrate, care for their children, and complete important recovery-related tasks.

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“This is a unique team – they are all highly qualified in the areas of mental health first aid, substance use treatment and case management. But we found the best way they can be of service to our community right now, is to be out there, to connect, be a helping hand or shoulder to cry on. Pūlama nā ‘Ohana means ‘to cherish the families,” and we find that’s what’s most needed right now; to provide a safe, nurturing space,” said Nicole Hokoana, Chief Executive Officer.

Some fire survivors have enrolled in substance use treatment programs provided by MBHR’s partner agencies, where they can address their behavioral health needs and provide additional case management services.

Those who need assistance can call 808-276-4243, email [email protected] or visit the website at MBHR.org.

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Maui Behavioral Health Resources is an umbrella organization of three nonprofit agencies: Aloha House, Mālama Family Recovery Center, and Maui Youth & Family Services. All three agencies seek to provide mental health and substance use disorder treatment to Maui residents. Together, the agencies provide services to almost 8,000 individuals in the Maui community each year.

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