Give Back to Get Back

What makes Hawaiʻi so special? Is it the endless ocean views, the lush green flora, or the ever present rainbows? We think everyone can agree that the magic of the islands is the sum of all of its parts.

People journey to Kauaʻi from around the world to experience a lush paradise and to replenish themselves. We love Hawaiʻi for its healing nature, but have we ever stopped and thought about giving back to our favorite islands?

As you plan your next vacation in Hawaiʻi consider including a volunteer opportunity in your itinerary. As Lāhainā residents embark on rebuilding after the devastating wildfires many needs remain. Listed below are several Kauaʻi organizations and nonprofits offering unique, fun, and gratifying volunteer opportunities as well as a few Maui organizations currently taking donations to support affected families.

Maui Strong Fund

The Maui Strong Fund is actively providing financial resources to support both immediate and long-term recovery needs for individuals and areas impacted by the Maui wildfires. Working hand in hand with state and county leaders, nonprofit organizations, and community members, the Hawaii Community Foundation (HCF) is diligently assessing the rapidly changing priorities to better comprehend the evolving needs of the affected individuals and locations. Together, their collaborative efforts aim to provide effective support and aid in the recovery and rejuvenation process.

Maui Food Bank

The Maui Food Bank is a vital organization that ensures residents of Maui County have access to safe and nutritious food. They are the main source of support for hunger relief in our community, collecting and distributing food to organizations and agencies that rely on their assistance to improve the lives of those in our island family. The Maui Food Bank is dedicated to preventing hunger and operates with compassion, integrity, and aloha, working hard to fulfill their mission and make sure that no one in Maui County goes hungry.

Maui Humane Society

The Maui Humane Society is an amazing organization that works closely with both the public and private sectors to support the community. They provide year-round, affordable spay/neuter services for around 6,000 animals and their families. Their Humane Enforcement Officers are available 24/7 to respond to animal emergencies and provide animal management services for the County of Maui. During times of disaster, they partner with the Red Cross and Maui County Civil Defense to set up pet-friendly emergency shelters. Additionally, their authorized staff conducts veterinary inspections for the State of Hawaiʻi’s Quarantine Direct Release Program at Kahului Airport. They truly go above and beyond to ensure the well-being of animals in our community. Suggested photo

Kauai Humane Society
Locations Include: Kauaʻi

The Kauai Humane Society is a compassionate nonprofit organization committed to promoting respect, responsibility, and compassion for all animals. Their mission extends beyond the island of Kauai, as they aim to nurture healthy relationships between pets and people, enriching lives in communities near and far.

Surfrider Foundation Hawaii Mountain-to-Sea Ocean Protection Projects
Locations include: Kauaʻi, Oʻahu, Maui, Island of Hawaiʻi

The National Surfrider Foundation network is made up of coastal defenders who are dedicated to safeguarding and conserving the beaches, coastlines, and offshore waters of the Islands. They warmly welcome individuals who share the desire to protect and preserve these natural treasures. Through volunteer cleanups, they work tirelessly to remove plastic pollution and marine debris from shorelines and near-shore waters on four islands, ensuring they remain clean and safeguarding marine life.

Friends of Kamalani Playground and Lydgate Beach Park
Locations include: Kauaʻi

The Friends of Kamalani & Lydgate Park is a non-profit organization dedicated to the preservation of Lydgate State Park. Every Saturday there is a Beach Cleanup at Morgan’s Pond at Lydgate Beach Park from 8:30am to 10:30am. Larger clean up events are held to observe Earth Day in April and National Make a Difference Day in October.

Maui Cultural Lands,
Hawaiʻi Land Trust,
808 Cleanups,
Mālama Maunalua,
Waikoloa Dry Forest Initiative, and
Sustainable Coastlines Hawaii
Ocean and Land Management Projects
Locations Include: Various Islands
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Join these nonprofits and explore some of Hawaiʻi’s breathtaking and lesser-known landscapes while making a lasting impact on the island’s environment. Spend a few hours with Maui Cultural Lands to help preserve culturally significant sites in Maui’s Honokōwai Valley and Kīpuka Olowalu. Support the Hawaiʻi Land Trust by visiting hidden refuges and reserves and assisting in removing invasive species. Contribute to 808 Cleanups by clearing streams or hiking trails. Assist Mālama Maunalua in restoring the marine ecosystem of Oahu’s Maunalua Bay. Help the Waikoloa Dry Forest Initiative in rehabilitating and revitalizing a rare dryland native tree forest. And, team up with Sustainable Coastlines Hawaii to remove ocean-carried debris from coastal areas and beaches.

Sierra Club of Hawaiʻi Beach Cleanups and Restoration Projects
Locations Include: Kauaʻi, Oʻahu, Maui, Island of Hawaiʻi

Join Sierra Club chapters throughout Hawaiʻi for group hikes and outings to explore the state’s stunning wilderness. For those interested in supporting the national nonprofit’s vast ecosystem preservation efforts, daylong and weeklong volunteer service trips are available, featuring a diverse range of projects. Past projects have included cultural site maintenance in Maui’s Haʻikū rainforests, native plant species restoration at the Hakalau National Wildlife Refuge, beach and coastal trail cleanup hikes in Kauaʻi, and invasive species removal from endangered waterbird wetlands on Oʻahu. With new projects added regularly to each island’s outing schedule, there are always fresh opportunities to make a lasting contribution to preservation efforts.