Local Nonprofits Receive $1.4 Million in Grants for Hawaii’s Coastal Health

The money will go to help coastal protection and restoration efforts on five Hawaiian islands.

The Hawaii Community Foundation (HCF) announced its 2019 recipients of the Community Restoration Partnership (CRP) grants, totaling more than $1.4 million to fund the protection and restoration of Hawaii’s coastal areas on five islands over three years. The CRP is a unique collaboration of national and international funders, foundations, and private donors, who provide resources for on-the-ground lower watershed and coastal restoration projects throughout Hawaii that involve community stewardship activities and focus on durable and sustainable positive impacts on coastal and near shore marine areas. The CRP funded projects align with the state’s goal for 30% healthy functioning near-shore areas by 2030.

“The CRP-funded projects are a true demonstration of caring for the land,” said Larissa Kick, Senior Program Officer for Community Grants and Investments at HCF. “The CRP funders are helping nonprofits to bring new life to ancient fishponds using traditional practices, restore eroding land with native plants, and remove invasive species that are choking clogged ocean channels.”

Since its inception in 2009, CRP has provided more than $4.7 million in funding to 52 local community organizations statewide, helping to strengthen the ties between cultural and environmental stewardship efforts. When the CRP was started at the Hawai‘i Community Foundation, it was as an innovative public-private partnership with NOAA’s Restoration Center, supported by the late Senator Daniel K. Inouye. It has now evolved to include 8 local and mainland foundations, private donors, and other partners, and advanced from a one-year grant into a multi-year grant program that also provides capacity building, training, and networking opportunities to nonprofits.

Students participate in the North Shore Community Land Trust program.
Photo: Courtesy Hawaii Community Foundation

The CRP is a funding partnership including the Atherton Family Foundation, the Harold K.L. Castle Foundation, Jeanne Herbert Fund at HCF, Kamehameha Schools, the Marisla Foundation, Oak Foundation, Traut Carson Fund at HCF and the Weissman Family Foundation at HCF. “When we talk about the health of Hawai‘i—both for our people and places—we recognize that these are very complex restoration efforts that will necessitate comprehensive solutions,” said Eric Co, Senior Program Officer for Ocean Resiliency at the Harold K.L. Castle Foundation.  “Consequently, broad collaboration, shared learning, and collective action will be foundational to our success.”

“It really comes down to this,” Kick added. “Healthy coastal lands are crucial for healthy native plant-life, wildlife, and oceans. We believe it’s important to protect our resources in Hawai‘i, and we are honored to be part of this partnership with engaged funders, and mission-driven nonprofits. Working toward environmental integrity and sustainability is no small task, so it will require laulima, many hands working together.”

Organizations, partners or funders that are interested in joining the CRP may contact Larissa Kick at 808-566-5565 or lkick@hcf-hawaii.org.

2019-2021 Community Restoration Partnership Grant Recipients and Projects


Conservation International Foundation, Hawaii Island  
Integrated Restoration: An innovative approach to community-based coastal and marine restoration at Honaunau Bay.                                               

Hawaiian Islands Land Trust, Maui
Waihee coastal dunes and wetlands refuge ecological restoration.

Hui Makaainana o Makana, Kauai
Alahula Aina Momona: continuing the path towards Aina Momona through building community capacity for ahupuaa restoration in Haena.                                                                                   

Hui Malama i ke Ala Ulili, Hawaii Island
Hoonohopapa community-based aina stewardship.                                                         

Hui o Koolaupoko, Oahu
Heeia estuary restoration.                                                                                           

Ka Ipu Makani Cultural Heritage Center, Molokai
Kawao Kaamola.                                                                               

Kalanihale, Hawaii Island
Restoring traditional fishing and coral reef resources in Milolii, South Kona.           

Ma Ka Hana Ka Ike Building Program, Maui
Wailua nui restoration project.                                                                                   

Malama Huleia, Kauai
Malama Huleia – alekoko restoration.                                                                                     

Malama Learning Center, Oahu
Growing ola na kini in the Waianae moku.                             

Malama Pupukea-Waimea, Oahu
Developing a self-sustaining approach to expanding native vegetation at Pupukea Beach Park.

The North Shore Community Land Trust, Oahu
Kahuku Point restoration.

Molokai Land Trust, Molokai
Expansion of critical habitat restoration – anapuka dune to dry forest.

Na Mamo O Kawa, Hawaii Island
Kawa dryland forest and coastal revegetation.    

Paepae o Heeia, Oahu
Heeia fishpond limu restoration.                                                                                               

The Nature Conservancy of Hawaii, Hawaii Island
Improving coastal health in West Hawaii by engaging community volunteers who perpetuate traditional practices.   

Categories: Hawai‘i Gives Back, Stories