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Friday, February 24, 2023

Kaʻū News Briefs, Friday, Feb. 24, 2023

Edmund C. Olson and Olson Trust COO Jeff Clark with a student recipient of eyeglasses
at Kaʻū High & Pāhala Elementary on Thursday. Photo by Julia Neal

FREE EYEGLASSES FOR STUDENTS ON THE PĀHALA SCHOOL CAMPUS was the gift from Project Vision Hawai'i and Vision to Learn on Thursday, supported by Edmund C. Olson Trust, First Hawaiian Bank, state Department of Education and numerous donors. Edmund C. Olson and his team greeted and handed out the eyeglasses for students with Principal Sharon Beck, a representative from the Mayor's Office and many others.

    Among those on the program at the Robert Herkes District Gym were Hawai'i Department of Education Superintendent Keith Hayashi, Vision to Learn Program Manager David Dijos, National Director Damian Carrol and COO John Kim, and Project Vision Executive Director Darrah Kauhane. Project Vision Hawai'i is a statewide effort and Vision to Learn is national.
    Project Vision Hawai'i uses four mobile screen units and two mobile hygiene trailers as vehicles to imporve health and wellness. Established in 2011, the nonprofit has provided screenings to more than 60,000 keiki and facilitated other health services for more than 100,000 people. See www.pr.org.
    Vision to Learn has helped children in more than 750 low-income communities in 15 states and District of Columbia. Its aim is to serve the needs of the hardest-to-reach children. About 90 percent of the keiki served live in poverty. Vision to Learn has provided more than two million children with eye care and 345,000 with glasses at no cost to children and their families. See www.projectvisionhawaii.org.
Children at Kaʻū High & Pāhala Elementary received free eye glasses
on Thursday from Project Vision Hawai'i, Vision to Learn, Edmund C.
 Olson and more sponsors. Photo from Vision to Learn 
    Jeff Clark, Chief Operating Officer for Edmund C. Olson Trust, said Olson has set up a foundation to be a charitable organization for "now and the future." Born out of the 16,000 acres owned by the Trust, with 9,898 acres in Kaʻū, the organization focuses on sustainability, particularly in agriculture, said Clark. It also works on renewable energy, with a small hydroelectric plant to serve its Kaʻū Coffee Mill and farms on Olson property up Wood Valley Road. Solar projects are also in the works. The third pillar, said Clark, is providing jobs and supporting local businesses and the community. 
   Clark attributed the support for providing eyeglasses to help children learn to Edmund C. Olson himself. In helping to fund the effort, "Ed wanted to focus on where he had a presence." Clark said Olson wanted to make sure the children of Kaʻū are served and also keiki on the entire eastside of this island. During the presentation, Olson said, "I hope everyone can get good vision out of this." 
    See https://olsontrust.com/foundation/

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The annual Hokulele Basketball Tournament hosts teams from around the island, all day this
Saturday at the Robert Herkes Kaʻū District Gym. Photo from Jan Kaez Penera

HOKULELE BASKETBALL ISLANDWIDE TOURNAMENT ON SATURDAY will grace the Robert Herkes Kaʻū District Gym on Saturday. Teams from all over the island will attend the one day Super Saturday event. Food concessions and donations will help to raise money for fifth and sixth grade groups to travel to O'ahu in April to attend AAU championships. 
     Hokulele has more than 75 youth members from six to 17 years of age, providing clinics, coaching, practice and tournaments. The club and its tournaments are solely sponsored by families of the players. To join the club, register for a tournament, volunteer, and sponsor, contact Hokulele Basketball Club President Ravel Kaupu by text or phone at 808-319-0687. Also contact  Vice President Jan Kaez Penera, and Coach Chrysa Dacalio.  Hokulele provides clinics, coaching practice, and tournaments.

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County and volunteer firefighters found this 1,800 sq. ft home and vehicles fully engulfed in
flames on Thursday night on Ocean View Parkway. Photo from Hawai'i Fire Department

A BIG HOUSE AND VEHICLES BURNED IN OCEAN VIEW ON THURSDAY. Hawai'i County Fire Department Capt. Gerald Baptiste reported that the 1,800 sq. ft, two story family dwelling at 92-2160 Ocean View Parkway was unoccupied and no one was injured. The report says that the call came in at 10:20 p.m. and Ocean View Fire Department arrived in seven minutes to find the building fully engulfed in flames with power lines down and multiple vehicles ablaze. The fire was out by 11:54 p.m. with the help of Engines 20. 11 and VE20, along with Tanker 20 and Tanker 11, and Medic 20 units, nine county firefighters and four volunteer firefighters.
   Fire Department estimates the loss at $212,520. "HFD attack lines were used to extinguish the fire, which consumed the entire structure and multiple vehicles on the property. No fatalities, no injuries," said the report. Hawai'i Police Department and Hawaiian Electric were also at the scene.

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St. Jude's Hot Meals are free to those in need on Saturdays from 9 a.m. until food runs out, no later than noon. Volunteers from the community are welcome to help and can contact Karen at pooch53@gmail.com. Location is 96-8606 Paradise Circle Drive in Ocean View. Those in need can also take hot showers from 9 a.m. to noon and use the computer lab from 9:30 a.m. to 1 p.m.

Free Meals Mondays, Wednesdays, and Fridays are served from 12:30 p.m. to 3:30 p.m. at Nā'ālehu Hongwanji. Volunteers prepare the food provided by 'O Ka'ū Kākou with fresh produce from its gardens on the farm of Eva Liu, who supports the project. Other community members also make donations and approximately 150 meals are served each day, according to OKK President Wayne Kawachi.

Volcano Evening Market, Cooper Center, Volcano Village, Thursdays, 3 p.m. to 6 p.m., with live music, artisan crafts, ono grinds, and fresh produce. See facebook.com.

Volcano Swap Meet, fourth Saturday of the month from 8 a.m. to noon. Large variety of vendors with numerous products. Tools, clothes, books, toys, local made healing extract and creams, antiques, jewelry, gemstones, crystals, food, music, plants, fruits, and vegetables. Also offered are cakes, coffee, and shave ice. Live music.


Volcano Farmers Market, Cooper Center, Volcano Village on Sundays, 6 a.m. to 10 a.m., with local produce, baked goods, food to go, island beef and Ka'ū Coffee. EBT is used for Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program, formerly Food Stamps. Call 808-967-7800.

O Ka'ū Kākou Market, Nā'ālehu, Wednesdays, 8 a.m. to 2 p.m. Contact Nadine Ebert at 808-938-5124 or June Domondon 808-938-4875. See facebook.com/OKauKakouMarket.

Ocean View Community Market, Saturdays and Wednesdays, 6:30 a.m. to 2 p.m., corner Kona Dr. Drive and Hwy 11, near Thai Grindz. Masks mandatory. 100-person limit, social distancing required. Gate unlocked for vendors at 5:30 a.m., $15 dollars, no rez needed. Parking in the upper lot. Vendors must provide their own sanitizer. Food vendor permits required. Carpooling is encouraged.

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