The last neighbor island Talk Story + Listening session for the HANO Team was Maui on December 1, 2023. While on island we felt a powerful sense of love and pride from those who are of Maui – its people and the places and communities they steward. The talk story offered time to share and affirm what the Maui nonprofit community has been able to do in response to the wildfires and to recommit to the road ahead in recovery.
We were grateful to former HANO Board Member, Debbie Cabebe, of Maui Economic Opportunity for hosting our gathering and to fellow Maui-based HANO Board Bevanne Bowers of Maui Mediation Services. One poignant takeaway from the session was concern about the cost of rent rising exponentially. Especially after the wildfires, many families are no longer able to stay on Maui. There was a resounding call for investment in local talent as we build the talent pipeline in the nonprofit sector, including addressing housing affordability for nonprofit workers and our community members. There was also strong encouragement for nonprofits to continue to engage deeply with community as recovery efforts are put into place.
All Maui County nonprofit community organizations are invited to join the Maui Nonprofit Directors Association as MNPDA aims to expand their support across Maui, Molokaʻi and Lānaʻi. HANO shared in this commitment and heartened to have been able to extend the HANO membership renewal relief waiver for nonprofits in Maui County. We reflected on how the impacts have been felt throughout Maui county and also the strength lay with pilina county-wide.
In the afternoon, HANO Staff visited the Maui Historical Society with Crystal Smythe and James Guequierre and learned of their plans to expand their grounds to archive the rich history. HANO also visited with Ann-Marie Forsythe, past HANO Fellow at Hui Noʻeau Visual Arts Center in Makawao. The beautiful artisan work created by all ages in the studios site and artists from around Maui exhibited the tremendous talent.