A grant of $50,000 over two years will help The Hawaiian Church of Hawaiʻi Nei nonprofit hold a series of workshops on Maui, Molokaʻi, Hawai’i, Kauaʻi and Oʻahu that provides resources to mālama nā iwi kūpuna.
The $50,000 grant from the Office of Hawaiian Affairs (OHA) Iwi Kupuna Repatriation and Reinterment Program will make the workshops possible, a press release said.
Sessions will cover sacred burial items needed and provide them to lineal descendants, Native Hawaiian groups and State of Hawaiʻi organizations to mālama nā iwi kūpuna in preparation for repatriation and reinterment.
Facilitated by nonprofit Hawaiian Church of Hawaiʻi Nei, the workshops are designed to address the needs of nā iwi kūpuna by providing the necessary education and knowledge focusing on gathering, preparing and crafting from our natural resources here in Hawai’i to make the items needed for the care of nā iwi kupuna.
The program will educate Native Hawaiian community members and their ʻohana with three separate resources that the Hawaiian culture uses to make the materials for the sacred burial items.
The first year of the program will include our native resource of Lauhala, Wauke and Ipu. The second year of the program, the resources will be Lauhala, Hau and Wauke.
Community members will learn from these workshops to pass down all the cultural knowledge and skills to the next generation and carry on the work with the knowledge to mālama nā iwi kūpuna of their area.
“This program will have a significant impact on the Native Hawaiian community and is needed in order to rebury nā iwi kūpuna culturally and properly,” the press release said. “All participants in these workshops will be properly prepared and culturally educated as it is our kuleana to care for our ancestors, maintain the spiritual balance and harmony that strengthens our mana and identity as Native Hawaiians and our Native Hawaiian communities.”
The purpose of the Iwi Kupuna Repatriation & Reinterment grant is to serve the Native Hawaiian lāhui in alignment with the strategic foundations, directions and outcomes of 15-year Mana i Mauli Ola Strategic Plan.
For more information on The Hawaiian Church of Hawaiʻi Nei, visit its website.