ANAHOLA — Kaua‘i Habitat for Humanity board president Leona Sa McDermott and board member La Contrades only recently presented makana gifts to three new home owners in Anahola, Department of Hawaiian Homelands.
“We have a special connection to these people,” Sa McDermott said. “We are all longtime residents of Anahola, and having new homes — especially during these trying times of the pandemic — is something we need to celebrate even if formal house blessings can’t be done because of social distancing.”
The Aki, Kaiwi, and Victor families were presented with personal congratulations, blessings, a plant for their new homes, and the customary Holy Bible — gifts normally presented during the traditional house key passing conducted by the Kaua‘i Habitat for Humanity.
“I don’t have records of how many hours the families put into getting their homes ready,” Sa McDermott said. “But I’m sure it exceeded what they needed to put in because they worked really hard to get these homes ready.”
McDermott said some of the homeowner responses to having a home to live in during this pandemic included, “relief,” “security,” and “It’s home!”
“This is like a huge weight lifted off their shoulders,” the board president said. “These families will embark on a new journey and make wonderful memories as they live in their new homes.”
Milani Pimental, the Kaua‘i Habitat for Humanity executive director, said in addition to the three Anahola homeless, they have celebrated the completion of nine homes — five in ‘Ele‘ele, and another five scheduled for completion within the next two, or three weeks — during this time of lockdown from COVID-19.
Dennis Fujimoto, staff writer and photographer, can be reached at 245-0453 or firstname.lastname@example.org.