Project Hawai'i, Inc.

Rating: 4.93 stars   105 reviews

Issues: Homeless & Housing, Human Services

Location: P.O. Box 1844 Kea'au HI 96749 USA

Mission: To enhance the lives of homeless children though interactive solutions to help them end the cycle of homelessness.
Results: This is our 13th year on the islands of Hawai'i. Typically each year we are able to help over 1,500 children between the islands of Hawai'i and O'ahu. We have successfully provide holiday meals, parties, gifts, to hundreds living in poverty or homeless situations. Every month we provide emergency care, hygiene, food and clothing to those living homeless along the waters edge and those high in the mountains. This is our 8th year providing the free summer camp educational program. We plan to expand our summer camp to those on the island of Maui for 2016 as well. Currently, we have our Adventures Abound Day Camp on O'ahu and Edu-Camp Sleep over camp on Big Island
Target demographics: Poverty stricken and homeless children living on the islands of Hawai'i. We target children between the ages of infancy to 18 years.
Direct beneficiaries per year: We provide services to an average of 1,500 individual children annually. In addition to the children, we provide life changing opportunities to moms enrolled in the first to work program. Helping them develop life and work skills so they can obtain work and employment opportunities to change their lifestyle.
Geographic areas served: We provide services to the children living in poverty across the islands of Hawai'i (Big Island) and O'ahu
Programs: We provide the following Programs: Holiday Parties/Events Basic Life Skills Emergency Services Summer Camp Teen Mentoring Program Healthy Hearts for Homeless Keiki Monthly Giveaways
2014 Top-Rated Nonprofit
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Community Reviews

Rating: 5 stars  

Aloha,
I was newly introduced to this program by attending a charity event hosted by Project Hawai'i, Inc. My friend was invited to an event, so I tagged along. Not really knowing what to expect, as there are so many charities out there, and everyone claims to be "changing the world". Well this was a bit different, not only did they not claim any outrageous claims, they simply invited everyone at the event to make a difference in their own way. Not asking for a donation, or even time...just do what you can to make a difference in your own way. They made the awareness of facts about homelessness that I don't think any of us realized, then gave simple solutions to how everyone can make a difference in their everyday lives. It was amazing that these two people can run an organization with such passion and NOT EXPECT anything from anyone...just the hope to do something to help these little children on our islands.
I encourage everyone to see what Project Hawai'i, Inc. is truly about. Listen to what is going on within their organization and choose to make a simple difference in just a few hours of your life.
I had fun at the event, my friend won a wonderful prize, and I purchased a silent auction item for a steal.
I hope this review is helpful for those who might be wondering who Project Hawai'i, Inc. is really all about.

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Rating: 5 stars  

Aloha,
I was at the Wai'anae Boat harbor yesterday and saw a group of children hanging around. More than usual, and just sitting on the wall waiting for something. I thought maybe there was a sign up, or something going on as there are many homeless in this area. These children really seemed intent on "holding their space". Not really doing much, not playing or anything, just sitting.
My family was at the park having lunch, so I was just curious to what they were waiting for.
Then a blue van pulled up, all at once the children stood up and pushed their way to the van door.
A lady jumped out and they all seemed so happy to see her. I heard them shouting, but not really sure what. Many children started coming from other cars, and out of no where to see her.
There were two people there for about an hour handing out backpacks, school supplies and food to the children. They all just sat on the wall and waited their turn. It was actually amazing that they were so well behaved and just waiting. As if they knew their turn would come and no one would be left behind.
I watched as many of the children crossed the parking lot back to the bushes, and some got in old cars. I knew these children were homeless and waiting for something, but it was amazing at what came for them. The children and the two adults exchanged so many hugs and laughter together. Really amazing the way they all came together in harmony.
After the two left, I walked to my car and asked one of the ladies sitting their with her children who those people were. I wanted to know because it seemed like such a wonderful thing happening. They had nothing wrote on the van doors, no banners, no big productions but I would guess well over 50 children sat there waiting.
She actually gave me their business card she said they gave her because she lost their number. She said they come all the time and care for the children who live in the harbor. Her children were able to attend the summer camp and went all over the place.
I visited their website to see how I could get involved and then saw their request for reviews. I think what they do is truly something to be commended for. These two people put so much work and care into their support. I really was amazed to see this. Our family goes to this park once in a while, have seen churches have service and provide meals, other handouts of food, but nothing that actually touched my heart. This program is full of passion and after visiting their website, I hope they do get more people like me to notice them. To make a difference in our community.
Thank you for helping our keiki of Wai'anae.

If I had to make changes to this organization, I would...

I don't really know about this agency, other than what I witnessed in the park on Aug. 1. 2013

Will you volunteer or donate to this organization?

Definitely

How much of an impact do you think this organization has?

Life-changing

When was your last experience with this nonprofit?

2013

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Rating: 5 stars  

Aloha,
I want to nominate Project Hawai'i, Inc., for this years top rated charities because I believe in what they are doing for the homeless children on the islands of Hawai'i. While there are many programs out there that provide services for the homeless, I feel that Project Hawai'i takes "providing for" to a new level of "caring for". They truly care about the children on a different level and make them part of their own ohana. It is amazing watching these volunteers interact with the children.
I was able to see their program first in action as an observer at the Wai'anae Boat Harbor during one of their "service days". It was nothing like I have ever seen in an organization. Not only did the two directors know each child by name, they had a special bond that can only be shared by those who truly have a heart for those who they work with. The children openly hug them, show their appreciation and welcome them into their world.
I was able to see this interaction and then watch them get the children ready for summer camp. They actually went into the bushes and brought the children out one by one. They gave them clean clothing and breakfast to start the day and then took them on a trip. Although I didn't go on the field trip, I did see the start of the day, and was really amazed about the level of care they provide for these precious children.
I hope they do win some sort of recognition for all their efforts. Being solely supported by public donations makes it hard to provide all the children's needs, but with more exposure to the true Project Hawai'i impact, they can continue their efforts.

If I had to make changes to this organization, I would...

I would hope for them to get all the funding they need to continue and provide all the children's needs, not just "what they can do" but everything those children need.

Will you volunteer or donate to this organization?

Definitely

How much of an impact do you think this organization has?

Life-changing

When was your last experience with this nonprofit?

2013

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Rating: 5 stars  

I honestly have not hear of this charity but their heart to help homeless children is so warm and caring. This dedication to the public is so warm and generous because it demonstrates the love for one another. It also demonstrates the need to add value to one another by helping the youth because they are our future and helping them is important. I admire this charity for its honesty and value it adds to community by doing a way to end homelessness and help Hawaii's children because they are our future. I'm thankful for everything you do and keep up the excellent work and soon no children in Hawaii will go hungry.

Will you volunteer or donate to this organization?

Definitely

How much of an impact do you think this organization has?

Life-changing

When was your last experience with this nonprofit?

2012

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Rating: 5 stars  

I am really impressed with this organization. When I first saw the woman in charge of the program in a neighborhood park setting up to conduct their monthly give away, I couldn't believe the passion and care she had for the children and their parents. She was so excited to welcome them, and they all seemed to really love her. I was then able to witness another encounter when she had them on a field trip for their summer camp. She had taken the entire summer camp to a live theater presentation. These young children were so well behaved and full of excitement. They all lined up, hands in front and quiet. I have never seen anything like it. I approached Magin and told her what an amazing job she was doing. She told me that wants the children to learn social skills to be prepared for the real world, and wanted to introduce them to something outside their regular daily routine. I truly enjoy seeing Project Hawai'i in action in our town year after year. I have contributed somewhat, but don't really have the means to be a regular donor. Keep up the good work!!

I've personally experienced the results of this organization in...

I was able to see the children on their field trip in town.

If I had to make changes to this organization, I would...

I think Magin and her volunteers are doing a wonderful job. I don't think they need changes.

Will you volunteer or donate to this organization?

Definitely

How much of an impact do you think this organization has?

Life-changing

When was your last experience with this nonprofit?

2011

How did you learn about this organization?

I first saw them in a local park giving out clothing and serving hot meals to the homeless children.

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Rating: 5 stars  

As a teen mentor at the summer camp, I can say that this program rocks. It is an awesome experience and I wouldn't have missed it for the world. I love my camp buddies and know that I helped to change their lives. Don't miss out on Project Hawai'i Summer Camp!! My mom said that I needed to do more community service to build my resume for college. I choose to visit Hawai'i and have a blast, little did I know my life would be changed forever. My friends said I was crazy, after all what is a teen boy going to do with all those children? I said, surf, hike, who knows, who cares, I will be in Hawai'i. Well, life is full of surprises and not only did I get the hours I needed, but I had a once in a lifetime experience thanks to my homeless camp buddies!!

I've personally experienced the results of this organization in...

I was in charge of two little boys...and they were a handful. My one camp buddy had never even used a toothbrush!! So my work was cut out for me. I had to teach them life skills, social skills and guide them through the daily activities. By the end of the day, I was worn out!! A teen boy worn out?? Yes!! This was an awesome experience. My camp buddies grew so much and I know that I did that! I changed their lives!!

If I had to make changes to this organization, I would...

get them more donations

Would you volunteer for this group again?

Definitely

For the time you spent, how much of an impact did you feel your work or activity had?

Life-changing

Did the organization use your time wisely?

Very Well

Would you recommend this group to a friend?

Definitely

When was your last experience with this nonprofit?

2010

What one change could this group make that would improve your volunteer experience?

More teens to attend. The camp had more little one's then teens, so it was more difficult for us. Teens SIGN UP!!

Did your volunteer experience have an effect on you? (teaching you a new skill, or introducing new friends, etc.)

Yes, I was able to gain so much skills from mentoring, caring for others and even learned cultural lessons like hula dance, and so much more. Really so much was given to me!! and that isn't the best part. The best part was being able to help those homeless children.

How did this volunteer experience make you feel?

I was so happy, excited and tired!! IT WAS GREAT!!

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1 previous review
Rating: 5 stars  

Well I wasn't expecting this. I had a wonderful experience with Project Hawai'i Summer camp and didn't know that every year we would have to do a survey to tell our story. I had to think about all the fun I had all over again.
This survey is about healthy living. How the camp helps the children live healthy.
As a teen mentor I was able to help them with basic daily care of their hygiene. I taught them skills that I guess they don't have because they are homeless? I was able to help them learn to wash their hands before eating, and brush their teeth after. I was able to help them understand that it is important to take care of their bodies inside and out.
We played lots of sports that keep them fit, and taught them to exercise every day. I was able to help teach them lots of outdoor games and sports. Over all my experience was great. I feel that the opportunity I was given by this program was great and wonderful.
The children were hard work but worth every minute. I loved my camp buddies and my experience.
Thank you for the opportunity and the lessons I learned.

I've personally experienced the results of this organization in...

participating as a teen mentor

If I had to make changes to this organization, I would...

I would get them more funds, and supportive help

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1 previous review
Rating: 5 stars  

10 people found this review helpful

My experience is some what different from what one might think. I wasn't a volunteer or a donor, or even a client. I was actually just someone who was interested in what was going on in a local park. One afternoon while walking through the park downtown, I saw a woman setting up a make shift service area and putting out tables with clothing, toys, books, all kinds of things. I asked if it was yard sale or something? She replied no, I just come down on Sundays and give away stuff and feed the homeless children. I was surprised about the calm in her voice and the excitement she felt to be there. I asked if she needed help, she just said if I wanted to help fold the outfits together. I kind of just wanted to know what was going on. I didn't know there were homeless children, and couldn't imagine how truck loads of items were going to be given away. Time passed, and I saw the park fill up with hungry, dirty children. Some had no shoes, or even shirts. They just kept coming over and getting food, taking clothing, and books. It was amazing. These children went home with arms full of stuff, and their bellies full. About one hour went by, and everything was gone, the families started leaving, and this wonderful lady (still smiling) started packing up the remaining items and tables. She seemed very content and happy. I was talking with her about why she did this, how she knew to do this. She just replied "Its my Kuleana. (In Hawaiian that means responsibility). She stated she was born to do this and wouldn't know what else to do with her life. I was amazed., and wanted to share my experience. This program is incredible and to think it is run by one lady with a huge heart.

I've personally experienced the results of this organization in...

viewing the difference it makes to the community.

What I've enjoyed the most about my experience with this nonprofit is...

watching the children get what they needed, and their smiles from all the joy Magin brought to their day.

The kinds of staff and volunteers that I met were...

She was wonderful. She was there alone, and didn't seem to mind.

If this organization had 10 million bucks, it could...

I saw what she did with only a few dollars, I could only imagine the impact with a million, let alone 10. There would no longer be a need for homeless agencies. She would be able to end homelessness.

How frequently have you been involved with the organization?

One time

When was your last experience with this nonprofit?

2010-2-01

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