Mental-health services needed for the island
We need aloha mental health. We need to live it.
Kauians’ lives have been and will continue to be changed because of COVID-19. It’s not comfortable saying that we need to take advantage of the COVID condition in Kaua‘i, but we must. Suicide, drug, alcohol and domestic abuse, economic uncertainty are not acceptable. What about the high percentage of suicides and domestic violence that never gets reported?
What we need to do is educate. We need to be proactive. So we can listen better and talk with an open heart for the long-term future of harmonious mental health of Kaua‘i.
Start now, through education to Kaua‘i’s community and, most importantly, to Kaua‘i’s children. Teach the children about their future. What’s coming to them. Teach them about aloha mental health. Teach them it’s not a destination, it’s a journey. Teach them about the work it will take to stay healthy.
The most important of all (is) creating family recovery programs for long-term aloha mental health. Kaua‘i is an island of family.
We need recovery centers and rehabilitation centers here on Kaua‘i that are family- and community-supported for our long-term, sustainable, aloha mental health. We need to assemble an interactive team of caring professionals and volunteers to build this islandwide network of aloha health.
Our clinicians will have the most important role for long-term, sustainable recovery, helping Kauaians cope with the changes the world will bring to Kaua‘i, along with a remarkable, creative economic team, for guaranteed, continued, sustainable growth and continuous learning.
Mental health is not a destination, it’s a journey.
If Kauians are a healthy, harmonious, aloha community, Kaua‘i’s guests will feel that way, too. For Kaua‘i forward to work, there needs to be a new way of healthy, economic, productive growth. It’s what we all need now.
Aloha mental health is a state of grace for the mind, body and soul; of love, affection, tolerance, mercy and gratitude.
When brimming with gratitude, one’s heartbeat must surely result in outgoing love, the finest emotion that we can ever know.
Craig Chenoweth, Kekaha
Sad the island isn’t yet fully reopened
I have been watching with interest the events on Kaua‘i and the impact COVID-19 has had on our lovely island.
I am really happy that there haven’t been any COVID-19 cases on Kaua‘i for many weeks now. I am saddened, however, that Mayor Kawakami hasn’t done anything to open the island fully. Maybe he is not adept at science, but there are many solutions available today, and his science advisers should have told him so.
First of all, the county should have bought COVID-19 analysis systems (sold by many companies like Cepheid — I found them on the web) that provide results in minutes, therefore doing away with quarantine.
Visitors arrive, get tested, and if negative, they go about their visit, and if positive they go to quarantine. This way you don’t depend on another state or airport’s testing facilities. This should have started already.
Secondly, COVID-19 has created an air of mistrust between citizens. Even when things open up, people will be afraid to come in contact with others, especially visitors, just in case they get COVID-19. This will take time to undo.
Thirdly, the fact that the tourism industry is almost dead has severe repercussions. When the tourists don’t arrive anymore, there is no income in many sectors of the economy, no jobs get created and no profit is made anywhere and, importantly, no taxes collected. Thus, the county starts cutting services. With services cut, the economy shrinks, and the next thing you know is that the big companies realize they are not making money on Kaua‘i anymore, so they leave.
All because the county didn’t get some COVID testing machines to examine visitors, restart the economy and create a guaranteed COVID-19-free zone.
Do you really want this as your legacy? I don’t think so. For the sake of the future of the wondeful people on Kaua‘i, their families and the economy, let science do its thing and restart Kaua‘i before it’s just too late.
Peter P. Vekinis, Kapa‘a