Learning Journey: Giving Back to Maunalua
- Posted on 27 Oct 2013
- In Stories of Place
Maunalua, Kona, ʻOahu–
By Ben Dumaran Jr. (October 26, 2013).
Today the Polynesian Voyaging Society and Hokule`a Crew members gave back to the Maunalua Community just a portion of the support they have shown us. We provided physical labor, a students ear or a young heart to various organizations within the community and it was with great respect, aloha and mahalo we did so.
To start off the day we met with Chris Cramer and the Maunalua fishpond Heritage Crew at Kalauha`iha`i Fishpond. The crews goal was to provide Chris and his team with labor in clearing the invasive Koa Haole bush so Chris briefly gave us the sad background of this small but amazing pond, the plans for the work and then we attacked. It’s amazing what a group of people working together for a common purpose can achieve.
At our second stop of the day, Laura Kaakua working with Liveable Hawaii Kai Hui gave us a tour and history lesson of Hawea Heiau and Keawawa Wetlands. Rich in cultural history, Hawea has one of the last ancient coconut groves in the islands and boasts the tallest recorded coconut tree in the nation. Laura and the Hui saved the last 5 acres of Keawawa Wetlands from destruction by careless developers and commercial housing.
The last stop took us to see the source of our spirit, our knowledge and our culture; to see our Kupuna at Lunalilo Retirement Home. The Kupuna studied the history of the Polynesian Voyaging Society and Hokule`a prior to the canoes arrival in Maunalua and it showed in their excitement upon meeting us. Songs and stories were shared from both sides which made for a lively time. Talking with the Kupuna is always a great way to brighten and enrich your life.
Information on these organizations can be found at: www.maunaluafishpondheritage.org , maunalua.net , Liveable Hawaii Kai Hui and Lunalilo.org .