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Hawaii Forest Institute Receives Grant from OHA – Funding Benefits Native Dryland Lama Forest of Kaʻūpūlehu

The Office of Hawaiian Affairs (OHA) awarded Hawai‘i Forest Institute $172,262 over two years to tend, honor and grow a place of peace and safety for the native dryland lama forest of Kaʻūpūlehu. The land grant funding will assist Hawai‘i Forest Institute with its “Aloha ‘Āina. Aloha Kaʻūpūlehu. Aloha Wao Lama.” program to foster restorative kinship relationships between community and ʻāina, utilizing educational stewardship, traditional ecological knowledge, and contemporary and institutional scientific methods.

Wayne Tanaka (Environmental Law Clinic group from Honolulu) and Lehua Alapai choosing the next lā‘au to kanu at Ho‘ola Ka Makana‘ā o Ka‘ūpūlehu. They are under the shade of the ‘Ēlama (Lama) tree. February 19, 2017. Photo by YYC.

OHA recently approved $6 million in grants over the next two fiscal years to programs benefitting the Native Hawaiian community. Hawai‘i Forest Institute was one of 23 organizations receiving grant funding to help meet its Strategic Plan priorities relating to housing, income, health, education and culture. The funds will be disbursed for fiscal years 2018 and 2019.

“We are extremely grateful to OHA for supporting ecology forest restoration and educational programming including our ‘Aloha ‘Āina. Aloha Kaʻūpūlehu. Aloha Wao Lama.’,” said Hawai‘i Forest Institute Executive Director Heather Simmons. “These valuable funds help continue the stewardship work at Kaʻūpūlehu and foster active, accountable and sustainable relationships for all community stakeholders.”

The long-term mission of the Kaʻūpūlehu project is for people to feel connected and committed to perpetuating a functioning native landscape, its genealogical stories and multiple truths, and treating each other with kindness and respect. The vision for Kaʻūpūlehu is to become a healthy landscape of plenty, alive with native plants, bird song and history that will be tended and cherished by many.

Kaʻūpūlehu is one of 23 traditional ahupua‘a (or land divisions) in the kekaha region of North Kona. To learn more about the unique ecology, history and culture of Hawaii’s dryland forests, visit http://www.drylandforest.org/.

Other funders of the restoration and education program at Kaʻūpūlehu Dryland Forest include landowner Kamehameha Schools, Dorrance Family Foundation, Union for the Conservation of Nature (IUCN) World Conservation Congress (WCC) Climate Fund, Hawai‘i Community Foundation FLEX-Arthur Lawrence Mullaly Fund, Hawai‘i Tourism Authority Kūkulu Ola Program, and American Forests.

Captain Planet Foundation Awards Education Grant to Hawai’i Forest Institute

The Captain Planet Foundation, an international environmental education foundation for youth based on the successful Captain Planet cartoon, is proud to announce that the Hawai’i Forest Institute (HFI) has recently been awarded an educational grant of $2,500.  HFI will use these funds toward the Pana’ewa Zoo Discovery Forest Project.

Landscape Architect Leonard Bisel plants a seedling with Prince Jonah Kuhio Kalani’ana’ole Elementary School student.

“We are thrilled to present this award to the Hawai’i Forest Institute,” says Leesa Carter, Executive Director of the Foundation. “We receive hundreds of submissions each year and have to be very selective to whom we award funding. This is one of the few projects from across the country that we chose to fund. We wish the Hawai’i Forest Institute great success as they work to implement this important project. It is our hope that our combined efforts will educate, empower, involve and invest today’s youth to cultivate a better tomorrow.”

Mother and daughter Volunteers

“We are pleased to receive support from the Captain Planet Foundation. These funds will allow us to initiate Phase II of the Pana’ewa Zoo Discovery Forest, a forest demonstration project at the Pana’ewa Rainforest Zoo & Gardens in Hilo”, said HFI Executive Director Heather Simmons.

HFI and HFIA Director Peter Simmons and Kamehameha Schools student pull weeds

HFI, the Hawai’i Forest Industry Association (HFIA), project partners, and community volunteers completed Phase I of the Discovery Forest in 2011, which includes Native and Agro-forest demonstration gardens. Phase II will include clearing invasive weeds; introducing native and agro-forest (Polynesian-introduced) plants and trees; and providing volunteer and educational opportunities through volunteer events, interpretive signage, and plant identification signs.

Hawaii Forest Institute Awarded HCF Grant

Arthur Lawrence Mullaly Fund of the Hawai’i Community Foundation Provides Dryland Forest Restoration and Community Volunteer Opportunities

Media Release:

The Hawai’i Forest Institute (HFI) has been awarded an $8,000 grant from the Arthur Lawrence Mullaly Fund of the Hawai’i Community Foundation for the Ka’upulehu Dryland Forest Restoration and Education project. This volunteer outreach project provides dryland forest restoration and forest stewardship opportunities at Ka`upulehu Dryland Forest Preserve in North Kona.

HYCC Intern David Cadaoas gives planting instructions to students at Ka`upulehu. Photos by Brad Ballesteros

HFI, in conjunction with community partners, is working to sustain fragile endangered dry forest ecosystems and share their unique historical, cultural, restoration, and scientific aspects to benefit Hawai’i residents and visitors. Volunteers will receive a hands-on, land-based, learning experience to effect positive change in the areas of responsibility, stewardship, and interdependency of all living things.

Enthnobotanist Jill Wagner gives planting instructions to eager volunteers at Ka`upulehu

In 2010, 150 volunteers will participate in stewardship learning events at Ka`upulehu Dryland Preserve. Site stewardship activities will include planting seedlings, collecting and distributing seeds, building trails, and pulling weeds. The project also includes invasive weed control and creating web pages and news articles documenting stories and photographs of the
A portion of this grant will help sponsor the Mauka-Makai Ka`upulehu “Connection Not Forgotten” talk story evening, which is planned for February 25, 2010 at the Kalaemao Cultural Center in North Kona. Speakers Ku’ulei Keakealani, Yvonne Yarber Carter, Keoki Apokolani Carter, and Wilds Pihanui Brawner will address ahupua’a perspectives connecting land and people, mauka-makai, through a cultural ecology partnership. Restoration, science, cultural history, and contemporary relationships to the land are vital components to the perpetuation of a dynamic Ka’upulehu dryland forest and coastal ecosystem. A grant from Hawai’i County’s Department of Research and Development is also assisting with sponsorship. Call HFI at 808-933-9411 to RVSP for this free informal talk story by February 19.

Other project supporters include: Kamehameha Schools, Bishop Museum, Kukio Resort, and Hawai’i Forest Industry Association.

Dryland Forest Grant Awarded

Media Release:

The Hawai’i Forest Industry Association (HFIA) has been awarded a $10,000 grant from Hawai’i County’s Department of Research and Development for its Ka Pilina Poina ‘Ole, “Connection Not Forgotten” project. This community-driven project provides interpretive materials and forest stewardship opportunities that connect two naturally and culturally significant destinations in North Kona; Ka’upulehu Dryland Forest Preserve and Kalaemano Cultural Center.

With grant monies, HFIA has already initiated the project, which involves sustaining fragile endangered dry forest ecosystems and sharing their unique historical, cultural, restoration, and scientific aspects to benefit Hawai’i residents and visitors. A Mauka-Makai (mountain to ocean) “Connection Not Forgotten” informal talk story evening is being planned for February 25, 2010 at the Kalaemano Cultural Center at 6 PM. Call 808-933-9411 no later than February 19 to RVSP for this free event.

Volunteer and Outreach Coordinator Yvonne Yarber Carter has started developing educational and interpretive materials, stories for an audio story center, and curriculum for the stewardship outreach program. The story center will feature live voices from oral histories, bringing connections to the past alive. Educational materials include field learning guides for youth visitors. These rich remembrances and cultural stories are made possible through a partnership with the gifted Ku’ulei Keakealani, Director of the Ka’upulehu Cultural Center at Kalaemano, who has deep ancestral ties to the lands…

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