News Landing Page News Landing Page News Landing Page

KokuaNews_icon All News

2019-20 Kōkua Hawaiʻi Foundation Year End Report

June 29, 2020

End of June marks the end of our fical year here at Kōkua Hawai‘i Foundation, where we support environmental education in Hawai‘i’s schools and communities. Despite the interruption in programming, during the 2019-2020 school year we were able to reach thousands of children and community members through our programs.

ĀINA In Schools is a farm to school initiative that connects children to their local land, waters, and food to grow a healthier Hawai‘i.

Kōkua Hawaiʻi Foundation works directly with 23 Oʻahu elementary schools that have implemented the ʻĀINA In Schools program. 92 educators from 50 schools and educational organizations across Oʻahu, Hawaiʻi Island, Kauaʻi, and Maui were trained to implement the ʻĀINA garden, composting, and nutrition curricula with hundreds of students across the state. We are thankful for our Department of Education partners who have made this possible. This school year 144 volunteer Nutrition Docents and 11 teachers led 640 nutrition lessons, reaching 2,536 students, while 10 teachers and 271 Garden and Compost Docents delivered 1,427 garden and compost lessons to 5,409 students. These docents also shared their time attending docent trainings and caring for the school gardens. An additional 212 students participated in garden clubs.

26 classrooms received ʻĀINA Chef Visits from 3 partner chefs with 1,016 students making healthy, kid-friendly recipes using local and school garden-sourced ingredients. 80 students participated in ʻĀINA Farmer Classroom Visits. 1,600 students from 11 schools experienced ʻĀINA Farm Field Trips learning from farmers first hand where their food comes from and how it's grown. ‘ĀINA Schools provided 94 ‘ĀINA-themed educational outreach events including healthy snacks, wellness nights, farmers’ markets, CSAs, and other ʻĀINA-themed fundraising this school year. 1,262 volunteers and students participated in 38 garden parties. 55 teachers, ʻĀINA docents, parents, and DOE teachers taking our PDE3 ʻĀINA Curriculum Training for Educators course attended our Farm to School Field Trip for Educators, visiting Waikīkī School & Food Farm and the Farrington High School FFA Program and Kuhiawaho Loʻi.
Kōkua Hawai‘i Foundation Project Grants support teachers in advancing their environmental education and stewardship goals on campus.

4,555 students from 31 schools participated in environmental projects supported by KHF Project Grants. Projects focused on school gardens, composting, aquaponics, nutrition lessons, waste reduction, as well as, STEM projects focusing on sustainability while incorporating cultural practices, and virtual field trips.

Kōkua Hawai‘i Foundation Field Trip Grants help bring students to outdoor sites where they can experience hands-on learning about Hawai‘i’s environment.

This year Kōkua Hawaiʻi Foundation granted field trip support to 6,248 students from 74 schools. As part of Farm to School Month in October, 1,647 students from 12 schools visited local farms including Kahuku Farms, Kahumana Organic Farm, MAʻO Organic Farms, Mari’s Gardens, Mokihana Farm, Nā Mea Kūpono, Sweet Land Farm, Waiāhole Nursery & Garden Center, and Waihuena Farm.

3R’s School Recycling Program empowers students to engage and educate their school community about the 3R’s—reduce, reuse, recycle.

KHF currently supports 98 schools with their on-campus recycling, waste auditing, and composting solutions. KHF continues to work closely with the Hawaiʻi Department of Education, as a community partner, and has now completed baseline cafeteria waste audits at 9 of the 15 Kauaʻi public schools; over 60 audit days of waste data and student surveys were completed. These baseline waste studies support the food waste reduction goals of the ʻAina Pono program and the rollout of new, fresher, locally-sourced, and made-from-scratch menus islandwide. Additionally, KHF hosted 11 Aloha ʻĀina Recycling Drives this year where nearly 110,000 pounds of metals, electronics, beverage containers, paper, batteries, household items, and oil were collected and diverted from the waste stream. More than 120 student and teacher volunteers supported the drives, with proceeds from the sale of select recycled materials going directly to the host schools.

Plastic Free Hawai‘i seeks to minimize single-use plastics by educating and empowering schools, businesses & community members across Hawaiʻi.

Over 11,816 pounds of marine debris were removed during 11 PFH beach cleanups with the help of 1,892 volunteers at various beaches on Oʻahu. Over 1,000 pounds of this debris was recycled with Parley for the Oceans. Partners included Semester at Sea, U.S. Fish and Wildlife, Kailua Beach Adventures, Sustainable Coastlines Hawaiʻi and All Good Sunscreen.

35 PFH Educational Presentations were made to 3,180 students and community members on Oʻahu. These included assemblies and classroom visits with students as part of the #PlasticFreeWave “artivism” project with Ethan Estess of Countercurrent Art, Sustainable Coastlines Hawaiʻi, Bureo, WSL, and other partners. Schools included both private and public DOE schools as well as universities such as UH Manoa and Hawaii Pacific University.

The PFH School Mural Contest included 9 schools from across the state. 484 students and 26 community members participated in the mural contest. 5 murals used single-use plastic collected from beach cleanups and 4 used bottle caps collected from their school communities. One school was directly motivated to participate as a result of the #PlasticFreeWave classroom presentation provided in December!

PFH participated in 45 Outreach Events on Oʻahu totaling 11,600 people in attendance. This included outreach at the North Shore Menehune Surf Championship, Pipe Masters Surf Competition, and the Bishop Museum. PFH Water Refill Stations were offered at 48 events attended by over 76,000 people. Use of the water stations kept an estimated 8,320 single-use plastic water bottles out of the wastestream. While The PFH Reusable Cup Program provided 13,100 cups to PFH school, community and business partners.

Currently, 12 local businesses sell our Plastic Free Hawaiʻi merchandise, helping to raise funds for the program while reaching a diverse audience of consumers. Kamalani Academy sold our PFH merchandise for their school fundraiser.

Educational Events allow us to share a variety of environmental education initiatives with a broader community audience including parents, educators, and school administrators.

This year hundreds attended KHF-supported presentations and workshops at Schools of the Future Conference, and the Hawaiʻi Agriculture Conference and KHF sponsored the Hawaiʻi Environmental Education Symposium. In a series of Simplify the Holidays Workshops with partners Bliss Healthy Foods, Stacey G Jewelry, and the Art Explorium, over 200 participants were empowered to create handmade gifts for a greener holiday season. Earth Day saw the return of the Kōkua Festival 2020 - Live from Home hosted by KHF co-founder Jack Johnson which was live streamed by over 3 million fans. $250,000 was raised for KHF with a portion of the donations directed to the following programs to promote food security and sustainable food systems in Hawai‘i: Aloha Harvest, Chef Hui Give & Go Community Meal Program, and the Full Calabash Fund.

KHF Haleʻiwa Property Since acquiring 8 acres in the heart of Haleʻiwa last fall, we’ve been busy working towards establishing mission driven agricultural, educational, and retail activities which benefit the community, promote local food, waste reduction, and environmental stewardship.

With the help of over 200 volunteers, we have hosted 5 Community Workdays on the property. The ʻĀINA Farm Stand acted as the Plastic Free Pop-Up shop and was open from November through mid March selling PFH merchandise, educating the public on our mission, and brainstorming with our neighbors on how to best utilize the property. The Kōkua General Store (formerly Sand People) hosted the Kōkua Community Clothing Swap in early March which welcomed 200 people to shop for second hand clothing. Mahalo to all of our partners that have helped us to build out our design and vision! Townscape facilitated the KHF staff, board members, and farm partners through an energizing day of dreaming and placemaking during our farm design charette. WATG selected KHF as the recipient for their Deserving Designs Award which helped us to build out the design of our Backyard Garden. We have also started working with Workshop HI on our architectural plans for the Kōkua Community Center, Kōkua General Store and ʻĀINA Farm Stand. Patagonia awarded KHF a grant to support removing invasive species from the Kōkua Learning Farm and installing irrigation. We also received a grant from Kaulunani Urban & Community Forestry Program which will help us to plant a variety of fruit trees as well as native plants and trees in both the Backyard Garden and Kōkua Learning Farm in the next year. As the times changed and shelter in place guidelines were put in place, our friends at Farm Link Hawaiʻi moved into the Kōkua General Store as they managed a huge increase in orders, connecting people to farm fresh food during a time in need.  Mahalo to Kaʻala Livestock for the donation of a refrigerated container to help with this effort. As community feeding efforts increased, Open Kitchen Oʻahu also began providing donated meals to the community as part of the Chef Hui Give & Go Community Meal Program using the Kōkua General Store as their distribution site.