Help Us Select a Grant Recipient for the Mealoha Kraus People’s Choice Award

Hawaii residents can support their favorite island charities selected as candidates for the Mealoha Kraus People’s Choice Award. The grant was established to honor the memory of our beloved colleague Mealoha, who was a Hawaii Life real estate broker for many years and a cherished friend to so many of us. She lost a short but fierce battle with breast cancer at the age of 42, in late 2019.

Mealoha had a huge heart and generous smile. She dedicated almost five years to serving her community as the first Board Chairperson of the Hawaii Life Charitable Fund (HLCF). Through her tireless efforts, the HLCF fundraised to support charities across the state. Under her guidance and leadership, the HLCF donated more than $200,000 to Hawaii charities in 2018, alone.

Each year, the HLCF Board of Directors receives and reviews grant applications, selecting one nonprofit on each of Oahu, Maui, Hawaii Island and Kauai. After careful consideration, they choose a total of four grant recipients, and each nonprofit receives a $5,000 grant. The Board then puts forth some of the remaining applicants and asks you to select the grant recipient for Mealoha Kraus People’s Choice Award.

This year, you can cast your support for one of these five applicant candidates. The nonprofit with the most public support (see link below) will receive a grant from the Hawaii Life Charitable Fund for $5,000:

Keaukaha School

Keaukaha Elementary School provides learning opportunities. Funds would be used to procure needed supplies to effectively engage students in the dynamic atmosphere of virtual learning – an effort to maximize student access to learning while minimizing the cost burden to teachers that already extend themselves for their students. WATCH VIDEO

Kanua Pa’a Mua

Expanding on the nonprofit’s  50acre farm called Hoea Learning Lab at Hawi in North Kohala, grant funding would assist in the expansion to another 5-acre parcel called KAPA – Kohala. This project is an agriculture processing area located in Halawa in North Kohala. The Hoea Natural Farming Learning Lab brings families together for hands- on educational programs in natural farming methods, animal husbandry, raising swine, chickens, cattle and crop production with kalo, various food crops, and aquaponic systems.
Kanua Pa‘a Mua is bringing their  “Backyard Revolution” to community families through workshops in these key areas.

Maui Swim Club

Grant funds would be used for equipment purchases and team travel for this all-volunteer run swim club that ensures that all Maui children get the best swimming instruction, coaching and opportunities for advancement and scholarship. For more than 40 years, Maui Swim Club has provided tuition-free swim instruction to Maui children, and the lowest membership rates for competitive swim coaching on the island.  This year, the funds would help subsidize travel to allow children to travel to compete and to take the burden off of local families impacted by the economic impacts of the pandemic. WATCH VIDEO

Chef Hui

Funding would help Chef Hui to continue their Give & Go Community Meals + Meal Kit Program. They plan to use the funds to partner with local restaurants, farmers and
distributors to prepare locally sourced meals and meal kits for children and families in need. In addition to the meals and meal kits, Chef Hui also includes simple, chef curated recipe cards to encourage families to cook together. WATCH VIDEO

HUGS Hawai‘i

HUGS Hawai‘i serves families whose children are suffering from life-threatening medical conditions. HUGS would use grant funding to support emergency airfare assistance for 50 families needing to travel to be with their child.  Funds would help 15o parents and siblings to be by their ill child during his or her life-saving medical treatment away from home. WATCH VIDEO

Please visit this link to support the charity of your choice. The grant recipient will be announced in early April. All selections must be made by midnight on March 31, 2021.  The Hawaii charitable nonprofit with the most “votes” will be awarded a $5,000 grant by the Hawaii Life Charitable Fund, held at the Hawai‘i Community Foundation.

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Jeff Fine

March 26, 2021

Chef Hui might get the most in helping people in need immediately😀

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