The Kalanianaʻole Community Hall at Kiowea Beach Park is in serious need of repair.

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Luana Alapa: Trustee Molokaʻi and Lanaʻi

“It’s a Kākou Thing!”

My trustee journey in September took me to parks and beaches on Molokaʻi. We have fewer than the larger islands. When our beaches and parks fall into disrepair, we don’t have a broad range of options. This affects the community’s ability to gather with ʻohana.

As I experienced the problem on-site, the words “It’s a kākou thing” came to mind. Kākou means “us” and we are all in this together. As your Trustee, I believe it fits OHA’s strategic plan to mālama ʻāina. Our ʻāina is where we engage in our cultural tradition of celebrating ʻohana – the spirit that deeply connects us by heritage, shared blood, family ties, intention, and aloha. It then becomes equally important to preserve the precious ʻāina sites at which we can gather. “It’s a kākou thing.” Let’s take care of one another!

You may have read about the OHA purchase of a land parcel in Iwilei on Oʻahu. Longs, Petco and Ross are current tenants on the property. We are working on this acquisition as a means of generating revenue for OHA’s beneficiaries and programs now and into the future. If you have any questions or comments, you can send them to me at alapainfo@oha.org or call 808-594-1898.

Your Trustee on the Move Kiowea Beach Park

Photo: Kalanianaʻole Community Hall
The Kalanianaʻole Community Hall at Kiowea Beach Park is in serious need of repair.

Kiowea Beach Park is a popular outdoor venue for ʻohana reunions and pāʻina. Kiowea has hosted ʻohana, at least for four generations, but the Kalanianaʻole Community Hall pavilion at the park is in serious disrepair. Only $500K of GIA seed money was allocated against the $1.8 million needed to renovate it! The community on Molokaʻi has been trying for far too long to gain the total funds needed to repair the structure. I understand a rare dragonfly was discovered on property that may attract research, jobs, and preservation efforts.

Meet Ipō and Kūnani Nihipali

Photo: Kūnani-Nihipali

Photo: Ipō Nihipali

Kūnani and Ipō Nihipali showed me around their farm in Hoʻolehua.

One of the blessings about being an OHA Trustee is meeting beneficiaries during trustee meetings and then learning about who they are and what they do.

Meet the Nihipali family from Hoʻolehua – who are pioneers in the “farm to table” lifestyle. Ipō and Kūnani moved from Pūpūkea, Oʻahu, to Hoʻolehua in 2014. Kūnani Nihipali and his brothers purchased a 5-acre DHHL lease and he and Ipo call 1 acre their home. Like most farmers in Hoʻolehua, they have had to erect a fence around their property to keep the wild deer from destroying their fruits and vegetables and the flowers that they have painstakingly created in this oasis in the middle of the Haole Koa trees. Among the bounty of produce you can find on their land is eggplant, kamalunggay, noni, fuji apple trees, three varieties of crown flower, and more. The next project is aquaponics as they hope to grow fish. Ipō is an award-winning artist and continues to find inspiration to paint creatively in Hoʻolehua. The Nihipalis favorite tag line is, “I support GMO-Grow My Own!”©

Aloha Kekahi i Kekahi.