Through the support of the Kupu E2U program and the awesome Evy Braum, our year-round intern, we have offered many wonderful opportunities this school year (2015-2016) reaching out to a wide range of schools in the Kapolei community. These experiences span the range of exposing the curious minds of elementary students to preparing high schoolers for their next step towards a green career.
At Mauka Lani Elementary, the Garden Club has come on multiple field trips to the nursery at Kapolei High School and has participated in the Adopt-a-Forest program where the students are now caring for baby koa trees. At the end of the school year, the seedlings will be ready to be outplanted in the forest by the students.
Over at Kapolei Middle School, the Garden Club has been helping to plant and care for their Native Hawaiian Garden – the students are truly proud of the work they have accomplished on their own campus.
Finally, the students at Kapolei High are getting hands-on experience in the classroom learning how to propagate native plants in the shadehouse and are continuing to learn about the numerous environmental job opportunities they can get involved in so that one day they may do their part in making this world a greener place.
In honor of Earth Day, the Hōkūleʻa Worldwide Voyage, and a dear friend of conservation and Hawaiian culture, the late Jamie Wong, a new garden at Kapolei High School (KHS) was dedicated and opened on April 21, 2015 with a special ceremony conducted by the school’s own talented Hawaiian language teacher and kumu hula, Mikiala Kanekoa. She led the youngest members of her Hālau ʻO Kaululauaʻe to perform in front of their admiring parents and guests of the ceremony. Mikiala kindly gave the name for this new garden: Hoʻolana, which means to cause to float or be hopeful, to encourage and lighten grief. Hoʻolana is also used when launching something or righting a canoe – a perfect name for our garden.
Another highlight of the event was the unveiling of our mural that was created during the Art & Aquaponics Symposium in 2014. The collaborative mural, designed by Waiʻanae-born artist Solomon Enos and painted by more than 60 people, was assembled, framed, and erected by KHS senior Tehani Peterson who was assisted by her instructors in the Industrial Technology course.
The hard work behind transitioning a field of weeds into a well-planned garden was done largely by KHS students in the Go Green club led by advisors Jeremy Soriano and Chelsey Jay of the Mālama Learning Center. Hoʻolana is still a work in progress, ready for more helping hands, which will make it a thriving outdoor classroom.
Many thanks to the following people and organizations for supporting the creation of Hoʻolana and the mural. They include: ʻIliahi Foundation, Nā Lei Aloha Foundation, Nā Mea Hawaiʻi, Solomon Enos, Tehani Peterson, Kevin Rice, Mr. Heresa, Martha Richards, Mikiala Kanekoa, Hālau ʻO Kaululauaʻe, Kapolei High School, and Go Green Club.
Go to Community Events to learn more about Art & Aquaponics Symposium and the creation of the mural.
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