Community Building Helps Kids, Adults

Richie Holyoke
Richie Holyoke

KALIHI (KHNL) -  More than 200 families enjoyed the first ever annual "Family Fun Day," at Kalihi Valley Public Housing Friday. A Housing and Urban Development grant helped Kalihi Valley Public Housing's "Family Fun Day" come to life.

The day proved to be more than just fun, for some young residents. With the day off from school, these boys could be getting into trouble, but they're not. Logan Pene-Maugoatega has lived here his whole life, and says the temptations of drugs and gangs are ever-present.

"Kinda like smoking and everything, and drugs and thats how their life gets messed up," said Pene-Maugoatega.

Friday's event gives him and his friends a chance to "hang out," and get involved with the community. Organizers wanted a place where people with different backgrounds could get to know one another.

"The purpose of this fun day is to bring families together to develop relationships with other people rather than just us here in Kalihi Valley," said Kalihi Valley Homes Association President, Leituala Tuimalealiilano.

For these adults, it's a chance to meet social, professional, and community groups. For kids, its a chance to interact with positive role models, like the mayor.

"He's a samoan mayor, and he lived here and we've never seen a samoan mayor who lived here because people, they think bad of us," said 14-year old Richie Holyoke.

These kids say the event makes them think about what they want out of life.

"Focus on school first, you go to school you can have a better education go to college and have a better life than everybody else here," said Pene-Maugoatega.

Many of the units at Kalihi Valley Homes are undergoing renovations, and managers say more units will open soon, for families in need of housing.