Students from Pearl City High and Lanakila Elementary raised funds for Hanalei Elementary, which was impacted by heavy rains and landslides on Kauai in April. The fundraisers generated $2,000 in donations — about $1,500 from Pearl City and a projected $500 from Lanakila Elementary.
“I’m humbled and proud of the fact that these fundraisers were student-led. On behalf of Principal Tahara'a Stein and the Hanalei Elementary ʻohana, I’d like to extend a warm mahalo,” said Kauai Complex Area Superintendent Bill Arakaki. “It has been a trying time for the state with the natural disasters impacting our islands, but these students have shown that we look out for each other and come together to support those in need.”
Students at Pearl City High School, along with their teachers Daphne Okunaga and Jami Higashi Lee, launched their fundraiser by walking around campus asking students if they would like to donate to Hanalei Elementary.
Pearl City High senior, Paulsson Solomon, shared, “Imagining not having the necessary tools and equipment to learn was heartbreaking. It was uplifting to see our classmates and staff giving without hesitation. It didn’t matter if the donation was loose coins from their bag or $20 bills, all the donations came from the heart.”
After hearing about the flooding on Kauai, students at Lanakila Elementary decided to make Hanalei Elementary the beneficiary of their upcoming #MaySuperFest Fundraiser on May 18. Lanakila students created crafts such as glitter slime, Perler bead works, friendship bracelets, graduation lei, upcycled containers, and knit bunnies to be sold at the event. Based on projected sales, Lanakila anticipates raising $500 or more to benefit Hanalei Elementary.
“At Lanakila, we’ve been making a lot of things in MakerSpace including keychains, magnets and 3D prints to raise money,” added fourth grader Connery Ortiz. “We wanted to raise funds for our school so we could cool our classrooms, but when we heard about Hanalei students we wanted to donate our money to them so they can get new supplies.”
Hanalei Elementary was closed for four days following heavy rains that flooded areas of the campus. The school reopened on April 23. A temporary educational site remains open at Hanalei Colony Resort for students residing in Waikoko, Wainiha and Haena, areas heavily impacted by the landslides that closed Kuhio Highway.