Three weeks into the new school year, the Pauoa Elementary kindergarten class garden was destroyed by vandals.
"They were finally taking ownership. They would call it their babies. They would say, 'Bye babies! See you tomorrow. See you Monday,'" Pauoa Elementary School teacher Jeanne Oliveira told
KHON2 News. "So, I think for them it was a sense of a life lesson. And how precious life is."
The school asked the community for help in restarting the gardening project. First Insurance Company of Hawaii and Home Depot sent teams of volunteers on a “Green Apple Day of Service” in late September to reconstruct the garden. Other Pauoa “Garden Angels” who stepped up include City Mill, Hawaii Schools Federal Credit Union and the extended Pauoa ohana, who made generous contributions of donations and supplies. Thanks to the effort, the Pauoa kindergarteners can continue their studies on plants and sustainability.
“Our kinders, as we call them, learned some great lessons about the power of teamwork and the good things that happen when a community comes together,” said Sean Tajima, principal, Pauoa Elementary School.