KONA, HAWAI`I (February 5, 2022) – La`i`ōpua 2020 is pleased to announce it is a Kūkulu Ola Program award recipient. The funding will assist La`i`ōpua 2020 in establishing its “Ola ka Lāhui” program where island historians, kūpuna, story tellers and artisans will share their mana‘o with residents and visitors interested in a deeper connection to Hawai`i’s history, arts, and traditions. These events are important opportunities to improve the sense of community and kuleana among visitors and residents and will allow tourism and communities to enrich each other.
The awards, provided by Hawai‘i Tourism Authority through the Kūkulu Ola Program and administered by the Hawai‘i Community Foundation, were provided to community groups, practitioners, and craftsmen from around the state committed to strengthening a broader understanding and appreciation of Hawaiian culture through place-based activities and engagement on each island.
La`i`ōpua 2020’s “Ola ka Lāhui” programming will kick off the afternoon of Saturday, March 26, at its Kealakehe location, adjacent to the Villages of La`i`ōpua. This date is especially significant as March 26 celebrates Prince Jonah Kūhiō Kalaniana`ole, a leading author of the Hawaiian Homes Commission Act which established the Department of Hawaiian Homelands (DHHL). Both La`i`ōpua 2020 and the Villages of La`i`ōpua are situated on lands administered by DHHL.
Three other “talk story” afternoon events will be held throughout 2022, each featuring an island artisan, storyteller, historian or kupuna. All events are open to the public and, in addition to the talk story, will offer the opportunity for attendees to participate in an art or craft, learning from and interacting with island residents who are sharing their traditions and talents.
Each session will be filmed and aired on Nā Leo public television; the events will also be available for viewing on YouTube and through La`i`ōpua 2020’s website, Laiopua.org.
“We are excited to be an awardee of Hawai`i Tourism Authority’s Kūkulu Ola Program and we look forward to sharing the mana`o and traditions of our island families with the broader community and our visitors,” said Kawehi Inaba, Executive Director of La`i`ōpua 2020. “It is gratifying to know we are perpetuating our culture through the filming, airing and storing of the talk story sessions, and that generations to come will watch and learn from today’s island treasures.”
Inaba also shared that the program’s name, “Ola ka Lāhui,” translates to “The Nation Lives On,” reflecting the intent to share the `ike (knowledge) and mo`olelo of Hawai`i for generations to come.
ABOUT LA`I`ŌPUA 2020
La`i`ōpua 2020 is a non-profit organization whose mission is to provide social, recreational, vocational, economic, educational, and cultural opportunities and infrastructure to Native Hawaiians to include the communities of the Kealakehe ahupua`a. It is a place for pilina (building and supporting one another through relationships) and pu`uhonua (a place of comfort, peace, and safety). For more information about La`i`ōpua 2020, visit its website, Laiopua.org, or call 808.327.1221.