Hawaiian Culture School Project
Grantee: Hālau Kaʻeaikahelelani
Communities: Hawaiian, from Waikoloa to Miloli’i
Mino-Niibi Fund Grants awarded: [put $$ amount?] 2018 & 2019
We support Halau Kaeokahelelani, a school of Hawaiian Culture, rooted in the foundation of ALOHA where students learn the fundamental cultural teachings through the lifestyle of hula, language, music, arts, land stewardship and ancestral connection. Agricultural science is being taught through traditional Hawaiian farming practices on their 6 acre campus. To this date they successfully planted, maintained and harvested their first crop of native Hawaiian ipu (gourds). Currently, ipu used in Hawaii for hula (as a percussion instrument that sets rhythm) are nearly all imported and it is rare to have Hawaiian grown ipu and much less, with native Hawaiian genetics. With the current kukui (candle nut) trees on property each dancer gathered the raw nuts to make lei.
The property where the school is located has a fruit orchard that covers 3.5 acres of the 6 acre property they lease. The orchard has more than a dozen varieties of fruit trees. The students and families will learn how to care for the trees, including cleaning and pruning as well as tending to the soil. The community will learn about the fruits, how to eat them as well as their health benefits. This project brings back self-reliance among families and understanding that if one takes care of the land, the land will take care of us.