Sunday | December 17, 2017
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Hamakua Youth Foundation to hold fundraising events

One definition of challenge is something that puts you to the test. The Hamakua Youth Foundation and community have truly been tested financially to make sure that the programs and services provided by the Hamakua Youth Center continue.

The Youth Center continues to be the only grassroots community-run, daily after-school program on the island. It’s been a struggle at times, for sure. Thanks to local support, however, a community identity is being developed which clearly shows that people care about the youth.

Others recognizing this include these sustaining partners: the County of Hawaii; the Hawaii Island United Way community partnership; the Hawaii Community Foundation and other private foundation funding sources. A local supporter helped us receive a charitable $25,000 matching gift from the Mark Paul Terk Charitable Trust.

Matching funds will come from fundraising events and members of our community ohana. A mahalo from the Hamakua Youth Center goes to trustee and former professional hockey player Ron Pasco for selecting the Center as a beneficiary of this funding.

These much-needed monies begins this fiscal year with a new sense of optimism; this establishes that the long term community vision is for quality youth service programming at the Youth Center will become reality.

A special thank you to a community partner Brandon Hickman and his fellow staff members at Lava Rock Realty for making the Hamakua Youth Center the beneficiary of their annual food drive program and for raising $500 for the center at the July 4 Waimea Rodeo.

The Hamakua Youth Foundation is also grateful for a $2500 donation from the Ernest Moody Foundation as well as the continuing support from the Waikoloa Hotel Association, Five Mountains Hawaii and the North Hawaii Drug Free Coalition.

Fundraising accounts for the majority of the matching funds is still needed.

Please make a note on your calendar for these two Hamakua Youth Foundation sponsored fundraising events. A late afternoon gala event is scheduled on Saturday, Aug. 24, at the Hi‘ilani Eco-house. There will be music, entertainment from both the young and old, and pupus gone wild. This is an opportunity to have a memorable experience and become part of the Hamakua Youth Foundation ohana. Look for more information on the Hamakua Youth Foundation website and Facebook site soon.

Look forward to the second annual Hula Festival on Nov. 16, sponsored by the Hamakua Youth Center, where a large crowd is expected. The Honokaa People’s Theater will once again be the venue. The first Hula Festival turned out to be truly a special community event.

The Hamakua Youth Center is “community owned and operated.” In addition to financial donations, the center seeks people, youth or adult, with specialized knowledge and skills to teach a class or lead an activity of interest. Please call Center Director Mahealani Maikui at 775-0976 to learn more and ways to become part of this special ohana.

Also, although it’s been much repeated, it does “take a village to raise a child.” Yes, it can be a challenge to participate on a Hamakua Youth Foundation committee or, for sure, as a member of our Board of Directors. Take it from Joel Cohen, a board member, “the benefits of being part of this ohana will provide major satisfaction knowing that you are truly making a difference.”

Contact Mahealani, and a board member will definitely give you a call.


The North Hawaii Education & Research Center is pleased to offer a professional development opportunity in Honokaa. “Understanding Workstyle Differences” is scheduled for Wednesday, July 17, from 9:15 a.m. to noon. Participants will receive a personalized work style assessment, and will learn skills to help them overcome conflicts, increase effectiveness, and create a harmonious work environment.

Tuition is $60 plus $5 materials fee. Instructor Nancy Lombard has over 28 years experience in the human resources field serving in positions such as human resources director, senior training consultant, and training specialist.

She is certified in several supervisory, management, and individual contributor training programs including “The Effectiveness Institute,” through which this workshop is certified. For more info or to register, please call 775-8890.

Carol Yurth’s column is published every Sunday and spotlights activities on the Hilo-Hamakua coast. She welcomes items for her column. Reach her by mail (46-1250 Kalehua Road, Honokaa HI 96727) at least 10 days before the requested publication date, call her at 775-7101, or e-mail


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