A cultural experience with a new look - Hawaii News Now - KGMB and KHNL

A cultural experience with a new look

Kekailoa Perry Kekailoa Perry
Kapono Rawlins-Crivello Kapono Rawlins-Crivello
Malina Cansibog Malina Cansibog

By Duane Shimogawa bio | email

MANOA (KHNL) - For years, they've been meeting up every first Saturday of the month. It's a gathering that brings together the past and present of the Hawaiian Culture.

Many are excited about the Ka Papa Lo'i O Kanewai and how it's changing with the times.

UH-Manoa students and community groups took part in a work day at the taro fields just below the campus.

The much-anticipated Kanewai Cultural Resource center won't be built until 2011, but the excitement of what it'll bring to the taro fields is already building.

As students and others learn more about the Hawaiian Culture in this outdoor classroom, they can do more to help them as well.

"It was always one of those things where you work with what you got, sometimes there wasn't a lot, but you had your hands, your feet, you had the love of the place and the love of the plants and people," Resource center coordinator Kekailoa Perry said.

Tents are where the federally funded Kanewai Cultural Resource Center will stand.

It'll be a multi-purpose facility with a large resource room and community learning area. Meeting rooms, laboratories, a kitchen and work spaces are also planned for the center.

"Of course you can learn the different stories, the different varieties of taro that we have but it's a different thing when you actually get to feel and see what it looks like," Student volunteer Kapono Rawlins-Crivello said.

He feels the resource center gives him and others a chance to grow, just like the plant that symbolizes the Hawaiian Culture.

"In order for this thing to run well, you have to be able to cooperate with other people," he said.

Saturday's work day is not only just for students, it's also for a special group of individuals.

"My dad was Hawaiian, so learning more about Hawaiian culture and stuff helps a lot to see what he grew up with," Kids Hurt Too participant Malina Cansibog said.

Her father passed away. She says doing what he used to do keeps him close to her heart. She's part of the group, "Kids Hurt Too." It strives to bring happiness to kids who have lost a loved one.

The Kanewai Resource Center is teaching lessons to enrich the head and the heart.

The ultimate goal is build the resource center with the environment in mind. Organizers say once completed, it'll set an example for other buildings to see the possibilities of what Hawaii's natural energies can do.

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