Timeline Stories

Civic Engagement

In 2016, we recruited over 60 volunteers to register over 5,000 new voters statewide, increased voter education by creating Candidates Game to inform voters about their candidates, and encouraged policy discussions (polite kine) by engaging people to talk about contentious issues civilly and disagree with aloha.

Resilience

Kanu Hawaii’s community resilience work was catalyzed by the natural disasters that impacted the state in 2018: extreme rainfall on Kauai, flooding on Oahu, Hurricane Lane, Tropical Storm Olivia, and the volcanic eruption on Hawaii Island. A key takeaway from all of these events was the importance of strong community relationships and cohesion in response and recovery. Since 2018, Kanu Hawaii has become part of several initiatives focused on growing the resilience of our communities.

Energy Independence

Kanu Hawaii engaged local businesses and over 500 individuals to learn about energy efficiency and to take part in the Energy Challenge, distributed over 1,800 energy-saving devices to homes across the islands, and installed over 70 grid-interactive water heaters to homes and small businesses on Oahu. We created resources for the Energy Challenge with Hawaii Energy to inform and transform energy use through a free online energy efficiency course.

Kanu Fellows

In 2013, the Kanu Fellows program was created to offer members co-learning and hands-on experiences to increase community participation and engagement with courage, humility, and minimal dependence on money. They led workshops and workdays throughout the state around topics including public narrative, community building, strategy, structure, and action. Each Fellow applied this learning on personal projects which included urban forestry, legislative options for family leave, GMO messaging, food organizing, social enterprise development, charter school development,..Read More

Civic Engagement

Our “Your Vision Your Vote” Campaign boosted civic engagement. In a year when the election system was threatened by deep budget cuts, a volunteer shortage, and the chronic problem of low turnout, we inspired people to take civic responsibility. We organized 350 volunteers to work at polling places across Oahu in the 2010 Primary and General Elections. More than 80% of participants were high school students from public and private schools. Moreover, we also registered..Read More

Waste Stream Reduction

Our “Simplify the Holidays Campaign” engaged 3,500 people in cutting waste during the waste-heavy holiday season. Participants committed to a slate of waste-cutting actions, from wrapping with recycled materials to crafting homemade gifts – steps that would reduce paper, plastic, and food waste during the holidays. Together, participants kept more than 10 tons of waste out of Hawaii’s overflowing landfills, prevented 5 tons of greenhouse gas emissions, wrapped more than 7,000 gifts with recycled materials,..Read More

Food Sustainability

Food Sustainability was tackled through campaigns including the Eat Local Challenge, Grow Local in Small Spaces, Ono Pono Seafood, and EBT at Farmers Markets. The “Eat Local Challenge” engaged thousands in building a more sustainable local food system by changing consumer choices. The Challenge educated people about the importance of building a more sustainable, healthy, and secure local food system in an island economy that imports more than 80% of our food.

I Will…

The “I Will…” Commitments motivated individuals to take action. This campaign resulted in over 15,000 commitments made to reduce waste, support local food and goods, transition to cleaner and more efficient energy, and become more engaged in local communities.

Volunteer Week Hawaii

Volunteer Week Hawaii launched in late-2017 as our local take on National Volunteer Week (celebrated annually since 1974). This statewide, cross-sector campaign brings together residents, visitors, nonprofits, businesses, schools, and government agencies in a concerted effort to take grassroots action that serves our communities.