OHA awards money for water in Anahola

ANAHOLA — Anahola Homesteaders are receiving watering systems on seven acres to grow food on Kaua‘i, thanks to a new round of grants from the Office of Hawaiian Affairs.

OHA announced Friday the release of $594,079 through three grant programs that will support Native Hawaiian communities.

OHA’s newly created Homestead Community Grant awards $278,095 to address community needs and improve the quality of life of homesteaders.

Funded projects include building a Hale Wa‘a in Maku‘u Homesteads on Hawai‘i Island, installing watering systems on seven acres for Anahola Homesteaders to grow food on Kaua‘i, and building a playground for keiki in Papakolea, O‘ahu.

OHA’s new Iwi Kupuna Repatriation and Reinterment Grant is providing $167,298 to four community organizations.

Nearly $33,000 will go toward facilitating the reburial of 700 to 900 iwi kupuna and moepu (funerary possessions) disturbed at Kawaiaha‘o Church grounds.

The remaining iwi kupuna grants will provide education in communities throughout the state to empower Native Hawaiians to protect and care for iwi and provide training on the proper treatment of iwi.

“The new Homestead and Iwi Kupuna grants are in direct response to our new strategic plan, Mana i Mauli Ola, which provides specific emphasis on the implementation of the Hawaiian Homes Commission Act and on broadening the definition of health to include spiritual health and the care of our iwi kupuna,” said OHA Board Chair Carmen “Hulu” Lindsey.

OHA will also sponsor 20 community events statewide that will receive a total of $148,686 from OHA’s ‘Ahahui Grants program.

In its 10th year, the ‘Ahahui Grants program supports community events that serve as enrichment opportunities on Hawaiian culture.

Other focuses include ‘aina stewardship, economic opportunity, food sustainability and strengthening ‘ohana.

“We are proud to partner with these community organizations that are providing educational opportunities in areas that align with the strategic foundations of our new plan,” Chair Lindsey said. “All of these grant awards help us to strengthen our ‘ohana, perpetuate our mo‘omeheu or culture, and help care for the stewardship of our ‘aina.”

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