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Groundbreaking Celebrated by Hawaii Island Adult Care and Hawaii Island Community Development Corporation

A New Home In Hilo For Hawaii Island Adult Care

A groundbreaking and blessing for a new 9,000 square foot Adult Day Care Center in Hilo was celebrated on March 6, 2017.  This senior project is a joint venture between the Hawaii Island Adult Care, Inc. and the Hawaii Island Community Development Corporation.

From left, Jeanne Beers, HIAC President; Maile Young, Health Services Director/GHW Program Director, Paula Uusitalo HIAC Executive Director, Betty Nagao, founder, former employee and now participant; and Lori Thal, Art Therapist.

“Our success to this point is in large part due to the significant support we have received from the Hawaii County Office of Housing and Community Development Block Grant program, appropriations from the State Legislature and a large grant from the Harry and Jeanette Weinberg Foundation, Inc.” said Paula Uusitalo, executive director of Hawaii Island Adult Care (HIAC).  Additional grants from local foundations and corporations have made it possible for construction to begin on the new facility.  “We are extremely grateful for their support.”

The HIAC Hilo Adult Day Center is currently operating in the old Hilo Hospital on Rainbow Drive.  This present structure, built in 1923, is inadequate to serve the current or future needs for the growing Day Center over the next 60-70 years.

The new building will feature large open spaces for art/craft activities, physical fitness geared to elders and quiet indoor spaces for reading, socializing and relaxing. The project features a fully certified kitchen to provide hot meals, outdoor gardens and a wandering path. Construction of the new home for the program is expected to take 13 months to complete.

However, Hawaii Island Adult Care is asking for added community support to pay for the commercial kitchen equipment that will provide meals for the seniors, furnishings, and the completion of an outdoor walking and resting area for the seniors.  This and other related expenses amount to an additional $600,000 needed.

“This collaborative effort between Hawaii Island Community Development Corporation and Hawaii Island Adult Care, Inc. has been a wonderful opportunity for our two not for profit organizations to ensure that our seniors are well taken care of now and well into the future” remarked Keith Kato, executive director of the Hawaii Island Community Development Corporation.  “The adult day center will complement the existing and planned senior housing in the Mohouli complex that will have 182 units at full build out.  The first phase with 60 units was completed in 2014, the second phase with 30 units is now under construction and funding for the last increment of 92 units has been secured from the State Housing Finance and Development Corporation.  This truly has been a joint venture between many public and private organizations all with the same aim of aiding our kupuna.”

For information on how to donate to the capital campaign contact the Hawaii Island Adult Care Executive Director Paula Uusitalo at (808) 961-3747, ext. 105 or Keith Kato, Executive Director of the Hawaii Island Community Development Corporation at (808) 319-2422 or visit www.hawaiiislandadultcare.org.

Groundbreaking for the New Mohouli Heights Senior Neighborhood was Yesterday

Mohouli Heights Senior Neighborhood, a new 60-unit affordable senior rental housing project in Hilo had it’s groundbreaking ceremony on Thursday, March 29.

From left to right: left to right: Donald Ikeda, Hawaii County Council, William Takaba, Managing Director, Keith Kato, Executive Director - Hawaii Island Community Development Corp, Michael Singer, President, Heartwood Pacific LLC (general contractor), Cheryl Fukunaga, US Dept of Housing and Urban Development, Cynthia Elliott, Rural Community Assistance Corporation, J. Yoshimoto, Hawaii County Council, Dennis “Fresh” Onishi, Hawaii County Council

Mohouli Heights Senior Neighborhood Phase 1 is the result of a public-private collaboration between State of Hawaii’s Hawaii Housing Finance and Development Corporation (HHFDC), U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development (HUD), County of Hawaii, Rural Community Assistance Corporation (RCAC) and the Hawaii Island Community Development Corporation (HICDC).

 

HHFDC provided $20.5 million in state and federal Low Income Housing Tax Credits, a Rental Housing Trust Fund (RHTF) loan of $8.6 million, and a Rental Assistance Revolving Fund (RARF) loan of $7.5 million. The project is also financed with $600,000 in HOME Investment Partnership Act funds administered by the County of Hawaii and a $4.0 million interim loan from RCAC.

The rental units are targeted at seniors whose incomes are at or below 30 to 50 percent of the Hawaii County median income as determined by HUD. Utilizing rental assistance from HUD and the County of Hawaii the tenants’ share of the monthly rent will be approximately 30 percent of their income for a 576 square foot one-bedroom unit. In exchange for federal and state financing and tax credits rents will remain affordable for 61 years.

By providing public lands and working with the Hawaii Island Community Development Corporation, the County of Hawaii continues its collaborative efforts to provide safe, decent and affordable housing for our kupuna,” said Hawaii County Mayor Billy Kenoi. “In addition to generating much need jobs today, the Mohouli Heights Senior Neighborhood Phase 1 project will be a model as we build an expanded center to serve the needs of our growing senior population.”

“The Hawaii Island Community Development Corporation wishes to acknowledge the assistance that we have received for this project from all levels of Federal, State and County government,” said HICDC Executive Director Keith Kato. “The cooperation of the Federal, State and County agencies has been the key in putting this project together with our investors, the HHF Equity Fund VI, LLC. We are working to continue the development of this Mohouli project with a new home for the Hilo Adult Day Center to replace their current facility at the old Hilo Memorial Hospital on Rainbow Drive. ”

“Public-private partnerships like this are essential to producing affordable housing,” said HHFDC Executive Director Karen Seddon. “By leveraging state resources, we are able to produce more with less. In addition to delivering safe and affordable housing for our seniors, these projects also create construction jobs and project value, investing in the future of our community.”

Mohouli Heights Senior Neighborhood is located at the corner of Komohana and Mohouli Streets in Hilo. Phase 1 is comprised of 11 residential buildings and a community gathering place connected with covered walkways. In addition to the new Hilo Adult Day Center future plans include 90 more residential units for seniors.