About The Kaʻū Calendar

Ka`u, Hawai`i, United States
A locally owned and run community newspaper (www.kaucalendar.com) distributed in print to all Ka`u District residents of Ocean View, Na`alehu, Pahala, Hawai`i Volcanoes National Park, Volcano Village and Miloli`i on the Big Island of Hawai`i. This blog is where you can catch up on what's happening daily with our news briefs. This blog is provided by The Ka`u Calendar Newspaper (kaucalendar.com), Pahala Plantation Cottages (pahalaplantationcottages.com), Local Productions, Inc. and the Edmund C. Olson Trust.

Monday, January 25, 2021

Ka‘ū News Briefs, Monday, January 25, 2021

Today was a Flood Day in Kaʻū
Flood waters rush down Nāʻālehu drainage canal toward the park and rodeo grounds as shown
in this image by Bob Martin. Waterfalls sprang from the mountains, as streams ran strong, the
flood closing Hwy 11 near Honuʻapo. See more photos below, the flood pictures
accompanying the governor's State of the State address. 

THE GOVERNOR GAVE HAWAIʻI'S STATE OF THE STATE ADDRESS at the Capitol today. During the annual presentation, Gov. David Ige said, "Twelve months ago, we met in the House Chambers planning for what we thought would be a very bright and promising year. State revenues were at a high of $8 billion. Our unemployment rate was the lowest in the nation, and we had our best credit rating ever from the bond market. Literally overnight, our expectations were crushed by the coronavirus pandemic.
    "Hawaiʻi moved quickly. On Feb. 28, the Hawaiʻi State Laboratories were among the first in the nation to begin testing for the coronavirus. On March 25, we implemented a statewide stay-at-home order. And on March 26, we imposed a 14-day quarantine for travelers—again, one of the first in the nation. But the virus was not to be denied. On March 31, we recorded our first fatality.
Waiʻōhinu Gulch near Mission Road. 
Photo by Bob Martin
    "With so much to deal with, where do we begin? In spite of it all, I believe we begin with hope. Hope, because there are safe and effective vaccines being distributed and more on the horizon. Hope because we have a president who believes in science and who has real empathy for the millions of Americans affected by this disease. Hope because all around us, there are everyday heroes.
    "Alofa Nua ran a small tire shop on Oʻahu with his wife Tanya, working seven days a week. He was young, healthy and full of life. Last March, he began feeling ill and developed a fever. That's when he got tested for COVID-19. He thought it was just the flu, but he was wrong.
    "A week after being admitted to the hospital, he began to have trouble breathing. The doctors at Queen's told him they would have to put him on a ventilator. In his words, they put him to sleep in March and he woke up in May. He was in the hospital for 7 ½ weeks.
    "During his stay, his heart stopped twice, his lungs collapsed, and his body was constantly fighting one infection after another. By all accounts, he should not be with us today. But he is—because of his own resilience and the love and support of his family.
    "More importantly, Alofa is a survivor because of the dedication, professionalism and sincere concern of his medical caregivers, who refused to let him lose his battle with the virus. They are the true heroes of Hawaiʻi. And there are many others, including our first responders and essential workers, who go to work every day, despite this deadly pandemic.
    "Here in Hawaiʻi, we have always counted on each other in good times and bad. Our past is filled with moments like this. We were at our best when we were looking out for each other—when we didn't let others, or the times, tear us apart. This is who we are. This is who we've always been.
Waiʻōhinu drainage looking toward Green Sand Subdivision.
Photo by Bob Martin

    "And so, we shoulder this mantle of shared responsibility for ourselves and for each other. We have a choice of letting this pandemic dictate our destiny or working together to create a brighter tomorrow. I ask you to join me in determining a new path to the future."
    Concerning Public Health, the governor said, "It was a year that changed life as we knew it. More significantly, it was a time when we lost so many—family members, friends, co-workers and neighbors. Our thoughts and prayers are with their families at this moment. That's why our most important responsibility right now is to protect the health and well-being of everyone in Hawaiʻi. That means having accurate, reliable and timely information. It means having an effective testing system to identify outbreaks and a comprehensive contact tracing network. It means having the resources to isolate those with the virus and to provide the medical care they need.
    "We will continue to take the tough actions necessary to keep our community safe, including the Safe Travels airport screening program. Hawaiʻi was among the first to demand pre-travel testing and quarantine procedures. That's one of the reasons we lead the nation with the lowest COVID infection and death rates.
    "We are also implementing a comprehensive strategy for the distribution of vaccines in every county. We are getting vaccine to people where they live and where they are able to receive it. And we will be working with the Biden administration to expedite the distribution of vaccines to everyone.
    "My thanks to the Hawaiʻi National Guard and the private hospitals, who played such a large role in assisting us in so many areas.
Nāʻālehu Gulch looking mauka. Photo by Bob Martin
    "I would also like to thank mayors Derek Kawakami and Mike Victorino – and former mayors Harry Kim and Kirk Caldwell – for their support and cooperation during this crisis. And I am grateful to mayors Mitch Roth and Rick Blangiardi for stepping in to continue this work.
    "Finally, protecting everyone's health means staying the course—because we are far from being out of the woods. As I noted earlier, this responsibility is one that is shared by all. We must all continue to follow the three W's: WEAR a mask; WASH your hands, and WATCH your distance." To those, I would add, get vaccinated when it's your turn. And I thank you for your personal sacrifices.
    "Concerning Our Families' Economic Well-being, the governor said that "protecting our families' health is only a part of taking care of their overall well-being. Our families are struggling just to survive. Hawaiʻi went from having the lowest unemployment rate to having one of the highest in just a few weeks. That's why we have paid out more than $4 billion in unemployment benefits during the pandemic. That's why distributing the federal CARES Act funds was a priority.
    "We are grateful for the assistance of the Senate and the House—especially Sen. Donovan Dela Cruz and Rep. Sylvia Luke—in helping us direct these monies to those who needed them, including:
$75 million in restaurant cards for the unemployed; $25 million to small businesses for new products and markets; $3 million to support the commercial fishing industry; $61 million for PPE for business and educational institutions; $10 million for local PPE manufacturing; $15 million for childcare providers; $31 million for computers and connectivity for our students; $14 million to bring in nurses and healthcare workers, and $5 million for food assistance.
Waiʻōhinu Gulch looking toward Green Sand Subdivision.
Photo by Bob Martin

    "We also spent more than $71 million in housing assistance to about 13,700 households who would have otherwise faced eviction. This program was cited by Forbes Magazine as a model for the nation in getting rent checks to landlords faster than any other state.
    "Moreover, the pandemic underscored why having a steady supply of affordable housing is so important for our families' well-being. We achieved our initial goal of building 10,000 new homes by 2020. But we need to do more. I am setting a new goal of 3,000 more units by the end of 2022.
    "We also want to make lands available to build affordable leasehold homes, particularly around the rail line. As I outlined last year, if we can reduce the cost of land, we could dramatically lower the overall cost of affordable housing in Hawaiʻi. I will be asking you to consider a bill to do just that. More importantly, the initiative would keep this supply of housing affordable forever.
    "We also want to invest more in capital improvement projects, adding infrastructure and roads that will allow us to develop more homes. To that end, I am asking my administration to take a sweeping look at how we generate affordable housing—from financing through construction. There are at least four agencies involved in housing that could benefit from better coordination and economies of scale.
    "In fact, construction has been the one bright spot during this pandemic. We expect to see investments of $1.1 billion in state capital improvement projects. Federal transportation projects—such as airports, harbors and highways—will add another $1.1 billion. And the private sector is expected to contribute another $10 billion and thousands of jobs to help restart our economy.
     See more of the State of the State Address in Tuesday's Kaʻū News Briefs, concerning Education, Economic Recovery, Government Services, Short Term and Long Term Recovery Initiatives, Hawaiʻi 2.0 and Broadband.

To read comments, add your own, and like this story, see Facebook. Follow us on Instagram and Twitter. See our Fresh Food on The Kaʻū Calendar and our latest print edition at kaucalendar.com.

Water headed makai, flowing under Hwy 11 toward Kamehame beach today during a 
flash flood in Kaʻū. Photo by Julia Neal
ʻO KAʻŪ KĀKOU AND KAʻŪ HOSPITAL CHARITABLE FOUNDATION DONATED A PORTABLE ISOLATION SINK, a new and "very important piece of equipment for Kaʻū Hospital, 
A portable isolation sink is a new
acquisition for Kaʻū Hospital.

says it administrator Merilyn Harris. Today she thanked the "generosity and partnership of Kaʻū, Hospital Charitable Foundation and Kaʻū," She said that Kaʻū Hospital is celebrating the arrival of a portable isolation sink. "Especially in these COVID times when we are taking every possible precaution to prevent the spread of infection, hand washing is extremely critical.
    "When we have patients with infections of any kind, or suspected infections, we isolate those patients right away but unfortunately, being such a small facility, we only have one true isolation room so we needed to come up with some creative alternative.: Harris noted that Sherrie Bazin, Director of Nursing, did some research and came up with the idea of purchasing a portable isolation sink that can be moved to the hallway outside of any room where it is needed. The sink offers hot and cold water, soap and drainage just like any other sink.
    "It's amazing! Our heartfelt gratitude goes out to all whose donations made this purchase possible!" said Harris.

To read comments, add your own, and like this story, see Facebook. Follow us on Instagram and Twitter. See our Fresh Food on The Kaʻū Calendar and our latest print edition at kaucalendar.com.

KAʻŪ HOSPITAL'S SISTER FACILITY SENT OUT A COVID VACCINE UPDATE today.  The hospital reported that 3,800 vaccines have been administered at Hilo Medical Center since Dec. 23 and
A tiny rapids from Kaʻū Hospital grounds today during the 
heavy rains over KaʻūPhoto by Julia Neal

kūpuna 75 and older are receiving COVID vaccinations. More than 4,000 kūpuna and frontline healthcare workers are scheculled. For kūpuna 65 and older, plus essential workers, 9,000 appointments are preregistered. The hospital is also scheduled for coming weeks. For long-term and extended care facilities Hale Hoʻola Hamakua and Yukio Okutsu State Veterans Home, clinics for the second vaccination are set for the first week of February.
    To register, for those 75 and older, go to: https://www.hilomedicalcenter.org/covid-19-vaccine-sign-up-information/vaccine-appointments-75/. Register on CDC VAMS website and schedule an appointment – Check out an instructional video for signing up on VAMS https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=tzlXMj5ayXU&t=8s. Also see the Hawaiʻi Island COVID-19 Vaccination Clinic Resource Sheet.
See a virtual CEO town hall on the hospital's COVID-19 Vaccine Distribution Plan. Watch past virtual CEO town halls on the Hilo Medical Center YouTube Channel.

To read comments, add your own, and like this story, see Facebook. Follow us on Instagram and Twitter. See our Fresh Food on The Kaʻū Calendar and our latest print edition at kaucalendar.com.

HAWAIʻI ISLAND REPORTS SIX NEW COVID CASES in the past day. The average daily new case rate over the last two weeks for Hawaiʻi Island is seven.

Onset of COVID-19 cases in the last 14 days, by zip code. Gray

areas have populations less than 1,000. White is zero cases.

Yellow is one to 10 cases. Light orange is 11-50 cases. Dark

orange is 51-200 cases. Department of Health map

    
New cases reported statewide in the last day total 123 with 88 on Oʻahu, 21 on Maui, one on Kauaʻi, and five residents diagnosed out-of-state. The average daily case rate for the state is 107 over the last two weeks.
    Since the pandemic began, 49 deaths have been reported on Hawaiʻi Island. At least 342 people have died in the state, none reported in the last day.
    Since the pandemic began, there have been 25,275 total COVID cases in the state. Oʻahu has reported 20,524 total cases, Hawaiʻi 2,128, Maui 1,626, Lanaʻi 106, Molokaʻi 25, and Kauaʻi 178. Residents diagnosed while out-of-state, 688. Statewide, 1,664 people have been hospitalized since the pandemic began.
    In the last 14 days, zero active cases have been reported in Kaʻū zip code 96772, which includes Nāʻālehu, Waiʻōhinu, and Discovery Harbour; 96777, which includes Pāhala; and Volcano zip code 96718.
    In the last 14 days, less than ten active cases have been reported in Kaʻū zip code 96737, which includes Ocean View; and Volcano zip code 96785.
    In the last 14 days, 20 cases have been reported in zip code 96704, which includes Miloliʻi, and 37 in Kona zip code 96740.
    See the Hawaiʻi County COVID-19 webpage, coronavirus-response-county-of-hawaii-hawaiicountygis.hub.arcgis.com. Report violators of COVID-19 safety protocols or quarantine to non-emergency at 935-3311. Hawaiʻi Island police continue enforcement of preventative policies.    
    Cumulative COVID-19 case count in the U.S. is more than 25,293,295. The death toll is more than 420,976. Worldwide, more than 99.71 million total COVID-19 cases have been reported. The death toll is more than 2,139,945.

To read comments, add your own, and like this story, see Facebook. Follow us on Instagram and Twitter. See our Fresh Food on The Kaʻū Calendar and our latest print edition at kaucalendar.com.



SIGN UP SOON

A JUNIOR MASTER GARDENER PROGRAM for ages 12 - 18 is being held at Pāhala Plantation House on the corner of Maile and Pikake Streets. The sessions are Saturdays from 10 a.m. to 11 a.m. They are sponsored by University of Hawaiʻi Cooperative Extension Office and its junior extension agent Marielle Hampton. The six workshops are based on the 4-H Junior Master Gardeners Program's Learn, Grow, Eat & Go curriculum. Those interested can contact Katie Graham at katie.graham@foodcorps.org. Call 808-785-0012.

TEMPORARY SUMMER JOBS ARE AVAILABLE through Hawaiʻi County Department of Parks & Recreation for Summer Fun at Kaʻū District Gym and Nāʻālehu Community Center, June 3 - July 16. The job is to work with keiki. Applicants must possess a current First Aid certification, submit a completed Summer Fun application, and be available to work June 3 through July 16, 2021. Summer Fun starts June 7, following a mandatory two-day training period for all temporary employees.
Summer Fun applications are available online at 
https://www.parks.hawaiicounty.gov/facilities-parks/recreation, the Recreation Division Office at 799 Pi‘ilani Street in Hilo, and various County gymnasiums located around the island. 
Completed applications must be filed with the Recreation Division or postmarked by Monday, Feb. 12. All inquires may be directed to the Recreation Division at 961-8740.

Directory for farms, ranches, takeout. The Kaʻū Calendar is free,
 7,500 distributed to stands and all postal addresses throughout Kaʻū,
 from Miloliʻi through Volcano. Read online at kaucalendar.com
 and facebook.com/kaucalendar. To advertise your 
business or your social cause, contact kaucalendarads@gmail.com.
VOLCANO ART CENTER is holding Zentangle workshops. They include Clay - High Fire with Erik Wold, an eight-class workshop. Visit www.volcanoartcenter.org
for full event details and more.

STRATEGIES TO JUMPSTART learning the craft of writing will be taught through Volcano Art Center on Jan. 23 by Jacquolyn McMurray and Kristen Wolfgang from 9 a.m. to noon. "How long has writing been on your bucket list? Are you ready to make 2021 the year you finally get started or restarted?" asks VAC in a statement on the session The Strategies to Jump-Start Your Writing livestream Zoom workshop "is perfect for beginning writers seeking new inspiration and strategies. Visit www.volcanoartcenter.org for full event details and more.

A SERIES OF CHILDREN'S CLASSES is offered by Volcano Art Center in January and early February. East African Handbuilding for Keiki with Erik Wold presents six ceramics classes for children ages 8 – 15 on Tuesdays from 3:30 p.m. to 5 p.m., through– Feb. 9. The Kids Drawing Class with Ken Charon is six drawing classes for children ages 8 – 14 on Wednesdays from 3:30 p.m. to 5 p.m., through Feb. 10. Beginning Bead Embroidery with Cabochons with Rona Smith is a series of six bead embroidery classes for children ages 10 – 14 on Thursdays from 3:30 p.m. to 5 p.m., through Feb. 11. Visit www.volcanoartcenter.org
for full event details and more.

Nominate Businesses that Provide Excellent COVID-19 Safety Precautions for a Gold Star. Submit nominations to County of Hawaiʻi Department of Research and Development at rb.gy/fsrkwg. Find help for small businesses at rb.gy/sxzjt0.


IN-PERSON EVENTS

A BRUSH WITH LIGHT gives the public a chance to "immerse in Hawaiʻi Island’s magnificent landscapes and plants," says the statement from Volcano Art Center. Catherine Robbins’ "evocative oil paintings" are in the solo exhibition, A Brush with Light – Volcanic Island Reflections, at Volcano Art Center Gallery in Hawaiʻi Volcanoes National Park. The show runs through Feb. 14, 9 a.m. – 4 p.m., Wednesday – Sunday.

GOLF & SOCIAL MEMBERSHIPS for Discovery Harbour Golf Course and its Clubhouse. The new Club offers Social Memberships, with future use of the clubhouse and current use of the pickleball courts as well as walking and running on specified areas of the golf course before 8 a.m. and after 3 p.m. to enjoy the panoramic ocean views. Golf memberships range from unlimited play for the avid golfer to casual play options. Membership is required to play and practice golf on the course. All golf memberships include Social Membership amenities. Membership fees are designed to help underwrite programs and improvements to the facilities. Call 808-731-5122 or stop by the Clubhouse during business hours, 8 a.m. to 4 p.m. daily at 94-1581 Kaulua Circle. Email clugatdiscoveryharbour@gmail.com. See The Club at Discovery Harbour Facebook page.
HIKE ONE OF THE MANY open trails, drive to the overlooks in Hawaiʻi Volcanoes National Park at Volcano and Kahuku units. See nps.gov/havo.

WALK THROUGH A GUIDED NATURE TRAIL & Sculpture Garden, Mondays, 9:30 a.m. at Volcano Art Center Niʻaulani Campus in Volcano Village. No reservations for five or fewer – limited to ten people. Free; donations appreciated. Email programs@volcanoartcenter.org. Garden is open to walk through at one's own pace, 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. weekdays. www.volcanoartcenter.org, 967-8222 

VOLCANO GARDEN ART'S SECRET GARDEN WALK is on free trails to the public. Sponsor Ira Ona describes the “Historical garden with many native plants. We have just created a self-guided nature walk in my new secret garden which is carved out of an upland native Hawaiian forest. Open to walk throughout the week, 10 a.m.-4 p.m. weekdays. www.volcanogardenarts.com, 985-8979, Located on Old Volcano Hwy in Volcano Village.

KaiLoki's, at the old Mehe's location in Ocean View, offers live music and karaoke on a to-be-determined schedule, along with a locally-sourced menu and bar. See facebook.com/KaiLokis.

Free Lifetime Entry for Veterans and Gold Star Families to Hawaiʻi Volcanoes and other national parks. Details at rb.gy/k3evh6.

OUTDOOR MARKETS

VOLCANO FARMERS MARKET, Cooper Center, Volcano Village on Sundays. 6 a.m. to 10 a.m., with much local produce, baked goods, food to go, island beef and Kaʻū Coffee. Cooper Center's EBT Machine, used at the Farmer's Market, is out of service until further notice. EBT is used for Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program, formerly Food Stamps. Call 808-967-7800.

Volcano Farmers Market. Photo by Julia Neal

OCEAN VIEW COMMUNITY MARKET, open Saturdays and Thursdays, 6:30 a.m. to 2 p.m., on the corner of Kona Drive and Highway 11, where Thai Grindz is located. Managed by Mark Council. Masks mandatory. 100-person limit, social distancing required. Gate unlocked for vendors at 5:30 a.m., $15 dollars, no reservations needed. Parking in upper lot only. Vendors must provide own sanitizer. Food vendor permits required. Carpooling encouraged.

ʻO KAʻŪ KĀKOU MARKET, in Nāʻālehu, open Wednesday, and Saturday, 8 a.m. to noon. Limit of 50 customers per hour, 20 vendor booths, with 20 feet of space between vendors. Masks and hand sanitizing required, social distancing enforced. Contact Sue Barnett, OKK Market Manager, at 808-345-9374 (voice or text) or kaufarmer@aol.com for more and to apply to vend. See facebook.com/OKauKakouMarket.

OCEAN VIEW SWAP MEET is open at Ocean View makai shopping center, near Mālama Market. Hours for patrons are 8 a.m. to 3 p.m. Saturday and Sunday. Vendor set-up time is 5 a.m. Masks required.

BUY LOCAL GIFTS ONLINE, IN-PERSON

VOLCANO SCHOOL OF ARTS & SCIENCES CALENDARS, t-shirts, and sweatshirts sales raise money for the schoo. Review the calendar at rb.gy/tmxzva. Order the Calendar using this form: rb.gy/ytekoz. Send payment or donations to VSAS PayPal, paypal.com/paypalme/VolcanoSchool. To buy t-shirts and sweatshirts, order from here: rb.gy/2a4cim. Send in order forms and payment to the main office: VSAS, PO Box 845, Volcano, HI 96785. For a printed copy of the order form to be mailed, contact Kaye at 985-9800, knagamine@volcanoschool.net. Contact Kanani at kwylie@volcanoschool.net for more information and assistance with ordering.

VOLCANO ART CENTER ONLINE, in person. Shop at Niʻaulani Campus in Volcano Village, Monday through Friday, 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. Gallery in Hawaiʻi Volcanoes National Park, open Wednesday through Sunday, 9 a.m. to 4 p.m. Virtual Shopping Appointments offered via Skype or FaceTime. Book at volcanoartcenter.org/shop for $5. Shop online gallery 24/7. Orders shipped or free local pickup available. See the VAC Virtual Classroom, which features over 90 videos. See volcanoartcenter.org/events, call 967-8222. 

KAʻŪ COFFEE MILL & VISITOR CENTER. Buy online at kaucoffeemill.com and in person at 96-2694 Wood Valley Road, Tuesday through Thursday, 9 a.m. to 3 pm.

PUNALUʻU BAKESHOP online at bakeshophawaii.com and in-person 8:30 a.m. to 5 p.m., seven days a week.

ALIʻI HAWAIʻI HULA HANDS COFFEE. Order by calling 928-0608 or emailing alihhhcoffee@yahoo.com.

AIKANE PLANTATION COFFEE COMPANY. Order online at aikaneplantation.com. Call 808-927-2252

MIRANDA'S FARMS KAʻŪ COFFEE. Order online at mirandafarms.com or, in person at 73-7136 Mamalahoa Hwy, Nāʻālehu.

KUAHIWI RANCH STORE, in person. Shop weekdays, 10 a.m. to 5 p.m., Sunday, 11 am to 3 p.m. at 95-5520 Hwy 11. Locally processed grass-fed beef, live meat chickens, and feed for cattle, goats, sheep, chickens, horses, dogs, and pigs. Call 929-7333 of 938-1625, email kaohi@kuahiwiranch.com

KAʻŪ ART SHOW, in-person in Nāʻālehu, Wednesdays and Saturdays from 9 a.m. to 3 p.m. The Gallery is in the process of showcasing everything in the gallery online at kauartgallery.com. If interested in purchasing, contact Kaʻu Art Gallery at kauartgallery@hawaiiantel.biz.

CHURCH SERVICES
OCEAN VIEW EVANGELICAL COMMUNITY CHURCH holds services on Sundays beginning with Sing-Along on the Square at 10:15 a.m., followed by Sunday Morning Service at 11 a.m. In-person services following CDC Guidelines and Hawaii mandates by using hand sanitizer, wearing face masks and practicing social distancing. 
Music and Sermons are posted to FaceBook.com/OVECC. Also see FaceBook.com/OVECC for more. The church campus for Ocean View Evangelical Community Church
is 92-8977 Leilani Circle. Call 808-939-9089

SUNDAY DRIVE-IN WORSHIP SERVICES ARE OPEN TO ALL at Waiʻōhinu's Kauahaʻao Congregational Church. Parking on the lawn begins at 10 a.m., with Worship Service starting at 10:10 a.m. Face coverings required when usher comes to vehicle to pass out worship bulletin and other materials, and at the same time, collect any offering or gifts the individual(s) would like to give, or when leaving vehicles for the restroom. Church provides paper fans to stay cool. Bring water. Catch the live-streamed service at 10:10 a.m. and Praise Jam, which runs from 9:15 a.m. to 9:45 a.m. Service is emailed Sunday afternoon to anyone on the email list. Sign up by emailing dwongyuen.kauahaaochurch@gmail.com or call 928-8039 or 937-2155.

ST. JUDE'S EPISCOPAL CHURCH SERVICES and worship are posted online at StJudesHawaii.org. Join the Aloha Hour via Zoom at 11 a.m. on Sundays, at rb.gy/3jfbzd, Meeting ID: 684 344 9828, Password: Aloha. Weekly hot meals, hot showers, the computer lab, and in-person services and bible studies are suspended. Check the webpage for Christmas services.

HOPE DIA-MEND MINISTRIES holds outdoor services Sundays at 9:45 a.m. at 92-898 Ginger Blossom Lane in Ocean View. Masks and distancing required. For help and/or to donate, call or text Pam and Lance Ako at 808-937-6355, or call the Ministry at 808-920-8137. See them on Facebook and at hopedia-mendministries.com.

HELP FOR HEALTH & COVID TESTING

KAʻŪ HOSPITAL offers COVID testing referral from the ER, a physician or a Kaʻū Clinic health provider.

FREE DRIVE-THRU COVID Testing, Saturdays at Kea‘au High School in Puna, 1 p.m. to 5 p.m., and Wednesdays at Konawaena High School from 2 p.m. to 6 p.m. and Civic Auditorium in Hilo from 3 p.m. to 6 p.m. (enter from Kuawa Street entrance). No co-pay, no insurance necessary, but bring insurance card if have. People do not have to have symptoms in order to be tested. Social distancing must be observed and face coverings must be worn at all times. For more, call Civil Defense at 935-0031.

MICRONESIAN COVID-19 Helpline is supported by We Are Oceania, weareoceania.org, to help with identifying COVID-19 symptoms, testing, quarantine, health insurance, housing, unemployment. Call (808) 913-1364. Watch the video at facebook.com/watch/?v=989579144844697.

DEPRESSED, ANXIOUS, NEED SOMEONE TO TALK TO? Call Department of Health's expanded Hawai‘i C.A.R.E.S. program at 1-800-753-6879 – the same number previously used by Crisis Line of Hawai‘i. Individuals in crisis can also text ALOHA to 741741, available 24/7.

LEARN SELF-CARE THROUGH Big Island Substance Abuse Council's Practice Self-Care Series. For additional series that feature refreshing wellness tips, follow the Behavioral Health & Homelessness Statewide Unified Response Group at facebook.com/bhhsurg.

KAʻŪ WOMEN'S COLLECTIVE OFFERS HEALTH PROGRAMS. Piko focuses on reproductive health; increasing access, respect, cultural competence, education, and choice. Pilina aims to grow membership and establish a culture of collaborative decision-making. Follow @kau_womens_health_collective. Contact rootsmedieshawaii@gmail.com. Call 808-450-0498.

RESOURCES FOR LGBTQ+, Loved Ones, and Allies at Sexual and Gender Minority online resource hub at health.hawaii.gov/camhd/lgbtq-safe-spaces.

TALK STORY on Nā Leo TV series aims to help deliver accurate and current information to Hawaiʻi Island residents. Airs live Thursdays at 10 a.m. on Spectrum Channel 53, streaming on Nā Leo's free mobile app, and on-demand at naleo.tv/covid19.

HEALTH AND FITNESS FOR KUPUNA at 808b-fit.com, contains videos for kūpuna to play and move along with. There are videos for stretching, tai chi, yoga, dancing, dance fitness, bon dance, hula, chair dancing, and chair yoga.

YOGA WITH EMILY Catey Weiss, Mondays, Wednesdays, and Fridays, 8 a.m. to 9 a.m. at Volcano Art Center Niʻaulani Campus in Volcano Village. Advanced registration required; $5 per class. volcanoartcenter.org/events, 967-8222.

CHOOSE ALOHA FOR HOME is available to families, to provide a healthy way to grow together using neuroscience and positive psychology. Program uses a series of self-guided videos, activities, and "dinner table discussion topics." Sign up at chooselovemovement.org/choose-love-home.

FOOD RELIEF

PICK UP FOOD WEEKDAYS n the parking lot of ACE Hardware in Ocean View from Hope DIA-mend Ministries TLC at 4:45 p.m. About 300 meals available each day, coordinated by pastors Pam and Lance Ako. For help or to donate, call or text Ako at 808-937-6355, or call 808-920-8137. See them on Facebook and at hopedia-mendministries.com.

EMERGENCY FOOD BOXES available at Cooper Center Tuesday through Saturday 8 a.m. to 11:15 a.m. Call ahead, 967-7800. 


FREE FOOD FOR KEIKI offered at Resilience Hub, Nāʻālehu Hongwanji on Monday, Wednesday, and Friday, noon to 4 p.m. The Hub also features drop-in WiFi and laptop access. Location is 95-5695 Hawaiʻi Belt Rd. Contact Michelle Galimba, 808-430-4927, for more.

EDUCATION

Virtual presentation, Sea Turtles in Hawaiʻi. Register to watch at rb.gy/rkd2fd

Free WiFi Access for Students is available in Pāhala, Nāʻālehu, and Ocean View through Kaʻū High & Pāhala Elementary. Questions? See khpes.org or call 313-4100.

Resilience Hub at Nāʻālehu Hongwanji, Monday-Wednesday-Friday, noon to 4 p.m. Drop-in wifi and laptop access, free meals for participating keiki. Follows all county, state, and federal COVID-19 guidelines. Contact Michelle Galimba, 808-430-4927. Register for Boys & Girls Club Mobile Outreach and Tutoring Programs at rb.gy/o1o2hy. For keiki grades 1-6. Contact Boys & Girls Club of the Big Island Administrative Office, Monday through Friday, 9 a.m. to 5 p.m., at (808) 961-5536 or email mobiletutoring@bgcbi.org or info@bgcbi.org.

ʻOhana Help Desk offers online How-To Guides for Chromebooks and iPads at rb.gy/8er9wm. ʻOhana Help Desk also available by phone, weekdays, 7 a.m. to 8 p.m., Sundays from 4 p.m. to 8 p.m.

Invite Park Rangers to Virtually Visit Classes, through connecting with teachers and home-schoolers with distance learning programs and virtual huakaʻi (field trips). Contact havo_education@nps.gov.

Weekly Virtual Town Meetings, hosted by Ka`u High & Pāhala Elementary, Wednesdays at 5:30 p.m. Discussion topics include attendance, best practices, Grab-n-Go meals, school updates, questions and feedback, and more. Go to KHPES.org for Live WebEx link.

Pāhala and Nāʻālehu Public Libraries, open for WiFi, pick-up, and other services. Nāʻālehu open Monday and Wednesday, 9 a.m. to 4 p.m., Friday, 11 a.m. to 4 p.m. Pāhala open Tuesday, noon to 7 p.m., Thursday, 9 a.m. to 4 p.m., limited entry into library with Wiki Visits. Schedule a Library Take Out time at picktime.com/hspls. Open for library card account help and reference assistance from the front door. WiFi available to anyone with a library card, from each library parking lot. See librarieshawaii.org.

Free Book Exchanges, at laundromats in Ocean View and Nāʻālehu, provided by Friends of the Kaʻū Libraries. Open to all. Keep the books, pass them on to other readers, or return them. Selection of books replenished weekly at both sites.

Read Report on Public Input about Disaster Recovery from damage during the 2018 Kīlauea eruption. View the Civic Engagement and Comment Analysis Report at rb.gy/awu65k

Watch Hawaiʻi's 28th Annual Filipino Fiesta and 8th Flores de Mayo virtual celebration at rb.gy/b53jgn.

Learn About Hawaiʻi's History & Culture through Papakilo Database, papakilodatabase.com.

Virtual Workshops on Hawaiʻi's Legislative Processes through Public Access Room. Sign up by contacting (808) 587-0478 or par@capitol.hawaii.gov. Ask questions and discuss all things legislative in a non-partisan environment. Attend Coffee Hour with PAR: Fridays at 3 p.m. on Zoom, meeting ID 990 4865 9652 or click zoom.us/j/99048659652. PAR staff will be available to answer questions and to discuss the legislative process. Anyone wanting to listen in without taking part in discussions is welcome. Learn more at lrb.hawaii.gov/public-access-room.

ECONOMIC RELIEF

Online Directory at shopbigisland.com, co-sponsored by County of Hawai‘i, has a signup sheet for local businesses to fill in the blanks. The only requirement is a physical address on this island.

COMMUNITY

Food Assistance: Apply for The Volcano School of Arts & Sciences COVID-19 Family Relief Funds. Funded by Volcano Community Association, and members of the VSAS Friends and Governing Boards, who have donated, the fund supplies KTA or Dimple Cheek Gift Cards, or gift cards to other locally owned business, to VSAS families in need. Contact Kim Miller at 985-8537, kmiller@volcanoschool.net. Contributions to the fund can be sent in by check to: VSAS, PO Box 845, Volcano, HI 96785 – write Relief Fund in the memo. See volcanoschool.net.

Marketing Assistance, for small businesses affected by COVID-19, from University of Hawaiʻi-Hilo faculty and the senior class at bit.ly/2YvFxsl. 

Apply for Utility Assistance to pay for electricity, non-government water, or gas. Applicants must be a Hawaiʻi Island resident, at least 18 years old, lost income or work hours due to COVID-19, and not previously received assistance from other COVID-19 federal or state-funded programs. Funded by CARES Act and distributed by Hawaiʻi County Economic Opportunity Council, required documents for application are government-issued identification, income verification documents for all household members, utility statement with address of services, lease/rental agreement or mortgage document, and proof of hardship. Hardship may include, but not limited to, pay stubs documenting pre-COVID-19 income, unemployment approval letter, or layoff letter. Apply at HCEOC.net or call 808-961-2681.

Apply for Expanded Hawaiʻi County Rent and Mortgage Assistance Program. Contact RMAP partners: Hawaiian Community Assets/Hawaiʻi Community Lending, HawaiianCommunity.net, 808-934-0801; HOPE Services Hawaiʻi, hopeserviceshawaii.org/rmap, 808-935- 3050; Hawai‘i First Federal Credit Union, hawaiifirstfcu.com/pathways, 808-933- 6600; Neighborhood Place of Puna, neighborhoodplaceofpuna.org/coronavirus-rent-mortgage-relief, 808-965-5550; Hawai‘i Island Home for Recovery, hihrecovery.org/RMAP, 808-640-4443 or 808- 934-7852; Habitat for Humanity Hawai‘i Island, habitathawaiiisland.org/rmap.html, 808-450-2118.

Apply for Holomua Hawaiʻi Relief Grants for small businesses and nonprofits, up to $10,000, support core operations, safe on-going and reopening costs, personal protective equipment, and training and technical assistance. The business or nonprofit must employ 50 people or fewer. See rb.gy/v2x2vy.

Receive Help Over the Phone with Critical Financial Issues, through Cities for Financial Empowerment Fund Financial Navigators from County of Hawaiʻi, in partnership with Hawaiʻi First Federal Credit Union. Complete webform at hawaiifirstfcu.com/community-resource-center or call 808-933-6600. Contact Sharon Hirota at 808-961-8019 with questions.AGRICULTURE


QUALIFY TO BECOME A BEGINNING FARMER OR RANCHER and receive benefits from the U.S. Department of Agriculture To qualify for status as a beginning farmer or rancher: Applicants must be an individual. Business entities may receive benefits only if all of the substantial beneficial interest holders (ten percent or more) of the business entity qualify as beginning farmers or ranchers. For example, a son moves home to take over the family farm and incorporates with his spouse and neither have previous farming experience. Their corporation would qualify as a beginning farmer/rancher. However, if a son moves home and forms a corporation with his father, who has had an insurable interest in crops or livestock for more than five crop years, the corporation cannot receive beginning farmer and rancher benefits. Although the son qualifies as a beginning farmer or rancher, the father does not so the corporation cannot receive benefits; and
    Applicants must not have actively operated and managed a farm or ranch anywhere, with an insurable interest in any crop or livestock for more than five crop years (ten years for Whole-Farm Revenue Protection). This includes an insurable interest as an individual or as a substantial beneficial interest holder (ten percent or more) in another person who has an insurable interest in any crop or livestock. Applicants may exclude a crop year's insurable interest if they were under the age of 18, enrolled in post-secondary studies (not to exceed five crop years) or on active duty in the U.S. military.

CONSERVATION RESERVE PROGRAM enrollment ends Feb. 12. Agricultural producers and private landowners interested in the U.S. Department of Agriculture Farm Service Agency Conservation Reserve Program can sign up for the program until Friday, Feb. 12. The competitive program provides annual rental payments for land devoted to conservation. 
     Contact AskUSDA at (833) ONE-USDA with representatives available 4 a.m. to 12:30 p.m. weekdays. The website, ask.usda.gov is available 24/7 and includes live chat agents available 5 a.m. to 1 p.m. on weekdays. Inquiries can also be sent via email at any time to askusda@usda.gov.

Women Farmers can Register with Hawaiʻi Women Farmers Directory, a statewide online directory of women-operated farms, ranches, and agribusinesses. Visit the program website to register, rb.gy/87fn9d.

Coffee Growers are urged to take a survey on how the pandemic is affecting them by Hawaiʻi Coffee Association. Take the survey here: surveymonkey.com/r/638VWS6.

Program to Sell Produce and Meats on Hawaiʻi Island from commercial farmers and livestock producers on Hawai‘i Island for distribution to families in need. Learn more at rb.gy/exzuk1

Native Hawaiian Farmers and Ranchers urged to use U.S. Dept. of Ag On-Farm Market Directory. Visit the program website, ams.usda.gov/local-food-directories/onfarm.

Read About Seed Biodiversity for Hawaiʻi's Local Food System in It all Begin and Ends with Seed, where Education by Outreach Coordinator Nancy Redfeather shares her insights. Read the blog at rb.gy/ijai3y.

Find Grants and Loans Offered to Farmers and Ranchers, at oahuaca.org. The website has a new search feature. Find Rangeland Management Resources at globalrangelands.org/state/hawaii.

Learn Basics of Organic Farming, via free modules at rb.gy/4wio2y.

PETS & WILDLIFE

One-Time Emergency Food For Pets is available through KARES. Call David or Barbara Breskin at 319-8333.

Report Humpback Whales in Trouble at NOAA Fisheries 24 hour hotline, 1-888- 256-984. Also report distressed sea turtles, monk seals and dolphins.

For free Veterinary Care, Spay & Neuter, visit hihs.org, Services Tab, Spay and Neuter or Community Vet Care, or email petsupport@hihs.org. Call 808-217- 0154. All appointments must be scheduled in advance and are open to healthy dogs and cats. Two pets per family will be accommodated, each pet with own appointment. Unavailable to animals other than dogs and cats. Unavailable to strays and those with contagious illnesses.

Wai‘ōhinu Transfer Station is open Mondays, Thursdays, and Saturdays, 6 a.m. to 6 p.m. Recycling services available 8 a.m. to 4 p.m. HI-5 deposit beverage container collection Saturdays only, 8 a.m. to 3:30 p.m. "White goods" appliance collection services will accept one appliance per resident per day. Customers need to check in with the facility attendant before dropping an appliance off at the facility. No unattended drop-offs allowed. Visit hawaiizerowaste.org or call 961-8270. 

Ocean View Transfer Station is open Mondays, Thursdays, and Saturdays, 8 a.m. to 4 p.m. HI-5 deposit beverage container collection will continue as usual on Saturdays only, 8 a.m. to 3 p.m. Visit hawaiizerowaste.org or call 961-8270. 

Sign Up for Solid Waste Operations Alerts at rb.gy/iemgrc for site closures, service hours, and more.