KS preschoolers walk laps and raise money in honor of Ke Ali‘i Pauahi

Dec. 21, 2022
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Cool morning makani and the towering Ko‘olau mountains provided a beautiful backdrop for a touching tribute to Ke Ali‘i Pauahi earlier this month at Nā Kula Kamali‘i ma He‘eia. More than 100 kamali‘i dressed in pink attire joined kumu and representatives from the Pauahi Foundation in the preschool’s first-ever Walk for Pauahi. The keiki gave pule, performed mele, danced, and walked several laps around the school’s parking lot. Bubbles from a bubble machine greeted the kamali‘i each time they started another lap.

The Walk for Pauahi was part of a series of events at the windward O‘ahu preschool meant to provide keiki hands-on lessons in the values of kahiau (generosity), and alaka‘i lawelawe (servant leadership).

Besides walking, each classroom also collected donations for the Pennies for Pauahi fundraising event. “We’ve received buckets upon buckets of pennies. Some parents dropped off huge bags of pennies. So we’re just so grateful for their donations,” said Hope Po‘o Kumu Andrea Waia‘u.

The Walk for Pauahi and Pennies for Pauahi events were the brainchild of Papa Laua‘e lead teacher Melissa Kapu. Her haumāna walked laps while wearing adorable pink capes. “Our ali‘i are our superheroes and we wanted to celebrate them. So we decided that we were going to be 'superheroes for Pauahi' and honor her in that special way. And they loved it,” said Kapu.

The kamali‘i also took part in a spirit week with each day devoted to things Ke Ali‘i Pauahi loved, like horses and tea parties.

“To see it go from beginning to end was amazing, a little stressful because you never know how you’re going to get 120 kids to do things. But all in all, I’m super pleased. I sincerely hope that we made Pauahi proud.”

Pennies for Pauahi fundraising events also took place at KS preschools in Nanākuli and Moloka‘i. The total amount raised for the Pauahi Foundation is still being tallied, but there is a much deeper meaning than just dollars and cents.

“Think about what kind of world we’d have if we could each help at least one person the way Ke Ali'i Pauahi has helped us! To see the youngest beneficiaries of Princess Pauahi's legacy learning the importance of giving through Pennies for Pauahi reminds us how important our work is in fostering a thriving lāhui,” said Pono Ma‘a KSK’82, KS director of Advancement and executive director of the Pauahi Foundation.

In this season of giving, if you’d like to help build upon Ke Ali‘i Pauahi's legacy through educational scholarships, please consider making a donation at

See more keiki pics in our Pennies for Pauahi photo gallery.