By Felix Sunny D’Souza
Subscribing to Sustainability
For years, Maui resident Jonathan Sherlock watched hundreds of tons of organic material (in the form of kitchen waste) go into landfills. Sherlock decided to divert a portion of that waste into the production of healthy soil and created Ground Up Maui, a subscription-based composting service. Residents and businesses fill five-gallon buckets with scraps, then schedule a regular pickup from their location. Ground Up Maui currently serves the North Shore, Ha‘ikū and Huelo. “My goal is to serve the ‘aina,” says Sherlock.
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Here’s What’s Cooking
With Maui’s high unemployment rate in mind, chef Jason Raffin founded the Chef Collective for COVID, an initiative which inspired and empowered local chefs and cooks with a purpose and a professional, creative environment in which to give back to communities in need. “We wanted to provide a level of quality not found during times of hardship and share a bit of our soul and warmth through our craft,” says Raffin. Donations were used to purchase food from local farms, which the chefs then transformed into multicourse meals. Volunteers from Lahaina Baptist Church hand-delivered more than 3,000 of these high-quality meals to residents and families in need.
First Responders, First Vaccinations
Nursing students at the University of Hawai‘i Maui College held a drive-through vaccination clinic for first responders. The drive-through concept minimized contact between staff and clients for the safety of all, and students were even able to vaccinate their own professors. The college partnered with the Hawai‘i Department of Health, the Maui District Health Office, the Hawai‘i National Guard and the MauiCounty Emergency Operations Center for the undertaking. Vaccines are being distributed in accordance with the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention’s guidelines.
On the ‘Fore’-Front of Community Support
In January 2021, the Sentry Insurance Foundation donated $250,000 to the Maui Food Bank, the county’s primary organization for hunger relief. “Supporting basic human needs … and improving quality of life are vital causes Sentry is committed to supporting in Maui,” says Kaylynn Pempek, executive director of Sentry. The Maui Food Bank purchases food from local farmers to create emergency food boxes for families in need. “Sentry’s donation will help us continue to sustain our community through these challenging times,” says Richard Yust, executive director of the Maui Food Bank.
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