By Victoria Cuba and Pono Suganuma
HNN Summer Interns
The Maui Mentor Center of the Big Brothers Big Sisters Hawaii (BBBSH) organization was awarded a $10,000 grant from American Savings Bank and Maui Electric this past month.
The HECIF grant, which was awarded on May 2, will go towards the Maui Mentor Center, which supports more than 400 disadvantaged children in the Hale Makana neighborhood.
"Being able to get a sizeable grant really means that we can do more for the kids," BBBSH Maui Mentor Center Coordinator Lehua Kaopio said. "Instead of one or two field trips, we can do more. The kids can enjoy it and be exposed to the island more."
The funds will go towards providing more activities, computers and games for the students during their mentorship.
"It would be able to give them more confidence and hands-on-experience and get outside more than they're used to," said Kaopio. "These kids aren't really exposed to a lot of other thing, so it was nice to give them a something like that."
The Maui Mentor Center is part of the BBBSH's school-based mentoring program, allowing Maui High School National Honor Society students to mentor with Pu'ukukui and Wailuku Elementary students. The center seeks to encourage participants to improve academically, socially and emotionally through providing a positive and safe environment.
The Maui Mentor Center has served around 20 children everyday, since the agency opened its Maui center in January of 2016.
For more information on this grant, click here.