Food bank calls for help

  • Dennis Fujimoto / The Garden Island

    New Hawaii Foodbank Kauai Branch worker Chyenne Beach checks incoming bread products for sanitation and damage Wednesday afternoon at the Puhi warehouse.

PUHI — The Hawaii Foodbank is asking for emergency food and monetary donations.

“Hawaii Foodbank has been responding aggressively to the daily needs of hungry island residents while also providing emergency assistance for Kauai and Big Island residents,” said Ron Mizutani, Hawaii Foodbank president and CEO.

Michelle Panoke, Hawaii Foodbank Kauai Branch office manager, said the foodbank started responding to the flooding disaster a few days following the event. “We had an outpouring of disaster relief supplies,” Panoke said. “Everything that came through our warehouses went out. We took care of people’s needs. Under normal circumstances, if the giving stopped cold today, we have between eight to 10 days’ worth of food to take care of the island’s needs.”

Panoke said the giving continues.

2 Comments
  1. Jerek Young August 9, 2018 5:39 am Reply

    This is a bit deceptive on the part of Hawaii Foodbank. The organization publishes its federal income tax return known as Form 990 on its website. The last return published is for 2016. At that time, they had over $7,000,000 in the bank and ANOTHER $10,000,000 in investments. Maybe they want to actually use the donations that have already been given to them? Does an Executive Director of a nonprofit in Hawaii really need to make $149,000 per year? Nobody qualified will do it for, let’s say $80,000?


  2. Non-profit Supporter August 11, 2018 12:39 pm Reply

    Thank you for posting this article – the Hawai’i foodbank has done so much these last few months. Now amidst hurricane season and the ongoing relief needed, those who can afford to help, please do.

    As far as Jerek’s comment – as much as you want to shed light on cash-on-hand and investments, your remarks are misleading to the actual finances of the Foodbank. Anyone who have worked for a non-profit or care to understand how one works, knows that the most important first steps of any non-profit that provides a service that is greatly needed in the community, must keep at least 6 months worth of cash-on-hand Incase of an emergency where donations and grants may unfortunately suddenly stop. For example for the Foodbank, if there’s a disaster large enough to suspend our community from affording to donate to the Foodbank – the non-profit will have to continue serving the community until it runs out of money. Lucky for Hawai’i, the Foodbank practices this fiscally responsible practice and we hope that we never have to run into a situation like this. If you run a for profit business, this is called a rainy day fund.

    Secondly, investments are a critical part of sustaining a non-profits ability to continue to serve their mission.. most non-profits have these investments due to a donor who may donate specifically to build these funds in hopes that the Foodbank will no longer have to rely on community donations to continue serving a community. Most times these investments are locked in a portfolio where the interests of these investments go directly to serving the community. For the case of the Foodbank, I would hope their goal is to have enough donors to contribute to this fund so that they no longer have to ask for donations from the community ever again.

    Ultimately, this whole mission to help those who fundamentally don’t have the ability to provide food for themselves or for their family is something we as a society need to tackle together.

    And as regards to CEO being paid $149k, maybe you could volunteer yourself being a CEO of a company that manages over a 100 employees that provide thousands of pounds of Food to people in need for a week. And when you’re done, let me know if you wouldn’t mind doing it for 80k/yr.


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