Alaka‘ina Foundation commits $2 million to grow Native Hawaiian Educational programs

Three local non-profits receive funding to support programs for Native Hawaiian students

July 16, 2021
Alakaina foundation


‘AIEA, O'AHU (July 15, 2021) – The Alaka'ina Foundation announces a $2 million investment to three local programs - Ho‘okua‘āina Lo‘i, Pauahi Foundation scholarships, and Ka Papa Lo‘i O Kānewai, all aimed at the educational development of Native Hawaiian students.

In celebration of their 50th class reunion from Kamehameha Schools Class of ’71, Alaka‘ina Foundation board members decided to make a significant impact in their community to mark this momentous occasion. To support the development of Native Hawaiian youth, Alaka‘ina Foundation chose three programs that directly impact students by connecting them to their Hawaiian culture and furthering their educational journeys to become future community leaders. The gifts were announced this week in a private celebration with their classmates.

Kimo Bacon, vice president and executive director of the Alaka‘ina Foundation said, “Our mission is to build leadership programs and opportunities for our nā pua o Hawai‘i, the youth of Hawai‘i. To do this, we concentrate on programs supporting 'ōlelo Hawai’i to preserve and perpetuate the Hawaiian language as an official language recognized by the Constitution of the State of Hawai'i; Ka Wa'a, the preservation and expansion of Hawaiian technology. We use the canoe and Hawaiian navigational techniques as a metaphor for integration of Western and Hawaiian technologies and the knowledge they provide to all; and Aloha ‘Āina, the teaching and preserving of our lands and oceans.”

Makahiapo Cashman, director of Ka Papa Lo'i O Kānewai at the UH Mānoa Hawai'inuiākea School of Hawaiian Knowledge said, “Ho'okahewai ho'oulu 'āina: ‘make the water flow and the land flourishes’ is the mana'o of Ka Papa Lo'i 'O Kānewai since its rebirth in 1980. We are very grateful to the Alaka'ina Foundation for helping us make the water flow by getting more Hawaiian kalo on our tables, and supporting our research, education and outreach efforts to perpetuate Native Hawaiian culture, values and knowledge.”

 “Ho'okua'āina, a name given to our organization by Uncle Earl Kawa'a, is a return to the values, lifestyle, mindset and practices of our kūpuna. We are so very thankful and honored to be supported by the Alaka'ina Foundation and others who understand the importance of perpetuating our Hawaiian culture. With deep appreciation and gratitude, we thank you. Mahalo piha,” Dean Wilhelm, Executive Co-Director of Ho'okua'āina, said.

Pono Ma'a, executive director of the Pauahi Foundation and director of advancement at Kamehameha Schools said, “As Kamehameha Schools alumni, the Alaka'ina Foundation board members are amazing examples of 'ōiwi leadership at work – beneficiaries of Ke Ali'i Pauahi Bishop’s legacy now paying it forward to help steward the next generation.” The Pauahi Foundation endowment gift will support at least 10 designated annual post-high scholarship recipients of Native Hawaiian ancestry.

About Alaka‘ina Foundation

Established in October 2004, the Alaka'ina Foundation is a Native Hawaiian Organization that is a private charitable foundation seeking to ensure that the young men and women of Hawai`i have the skills and competencies they need to be effective leaders. Alaka'ina is making this a reality by developing innovative educational programs that combine leadership, science and technology, and environmental stewardship.

About University of Hawaiʻi Foundation

Established in 2007, Hawai'inuiākea School of Hawaiian Knowledge is Kamakakūokalani Center for Hawaiian Studies, Kawaihuelani Center for Hawaiian Language, Ka Papa Lo'i O Kānewai Cultural Garden, Native Hawaiian Student Services, and the Dean’s Office.

The mission of the Hawai'inuiākea School of Hawaiian Knowledge is to pursue, perpetuate, research, and revitalize all areas and forms of Hawaiian knowledge.

The University of Hawaiʻi Foundation is the non-profit organization that raises private gifts, manages assets, and provides alumni and donor services for all ten campuses of the UH System.

About Ho‘okua‘āina

Ho‘okua‘āina is a non-profit nestled in the ahupua'a of Kailua at Kapalai in Maunawili on the island of O`ahu. Since 2007, the 'ohana at Kapalai, along with a hui of collaborators and thousands of community volunteers, have restored 7.6 acres to an abundant and productive kalo farm. Today the lo’i is an ideal outdoor learning environment and valuable asset to the Windward community as well as a productive farm enterprise. We are literally “rebuilding lives from the ground up” by empowering youth to realize the meaning and purpose of their lives by helping them develop life strategies and skills through the cultivation of kalo and Hawaiian cultural values-based coaching.

Connect with us on FB, IG, Twitter or our website for more information on our programs and how to get involved:

About Pauahi Foundation

Established in 1995 by the trustees of Kamehameha Schools as the fundraising arm of the organization, the Pauahi Foundation’s purpose is to create educational opportunities that transform lives within the Hawaiian community. To further broaden the reach of Kamehameha Schools and in its pursuit of 20-year vision of a thriving lāhui, the foundation is now managed under the umbrella of Kamehameha Schools Office of Advancement. 100% of funds donated to the Pauahi Foundation directly support the program. For more information, please visit