ʻĀina Hoʻōla Initiative

What We Do

We are restoring the estuarine wetlands and fish ponds of Lokowaka, Ki‘onakapahu, and ‘Akahi in Hilo Hawaiʻi by removing invasive plants and replacing the area with native ones for our endangered endemic waterbirds and migratory birds.

Who We Are

ʻĀina Hoʻōla Initiative is a Hawaiʻi non-profit corporation recognized by the Internal Revenue Service as a tax-exempt 501(c)(3) organization. Founded by Kumiko and Patrick Mattison, our mission is deeply rooted in the preservation and restoration of Hawai’i’s unique ecosystems.

What started as a passion project during the COVID pandemic has grown into a full-scale, hands-on restoration effort focusing on the estuarine wetlands and fish ponds of Lokowaka, Ki’onakapahu, and ‘Akahi in Keaukaha.

Our journey began with a memory: a single sighting of the ae’o, or Hawaiian stilt, in Lokowaka a decade ago. Inspired by this encounter, we began a labor of love, meticulously clearing invasive species from the pond Ki’onakapahu and planting native species in their place. Our work quickly bore fruit as we saw the return of nene, or Hawaiian geese, to the area just three months after we started.

Cause Areas

Animals, Environmental Conservation, Cultural Preservation

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Tax Status
  • Nonprofit


ʻĀina Hoʻōla Initiative

Volunteer Opportunities