HELCO donates $5,000 to Hope Services for Kilauea response

  • Courtesy photo Jay Ignacio, president of Hawaii Electric Light Co., presented a donation to Brandee Menino, CEO of Hope Services Hawaii, in recognition of the nonprofit’s work to provide emergency shelter to residents displaced by the Kilauea eruption in lower Puna.

A $5,000 donation from Hawaii Electric Light Co. to Hope Services Hawaii was presented Thursday during the Pacific Risk Management ʻOhana (PRiMO) disaster management conference at the Hawai‘i Convention Center in Honolulu.

Following an update about the ongoing response to the Kilauea eruption in lower Puna, the nonprofit Hope Services was honored for its efforts aiding displaced residents.

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“Hope Services has been instrumental in providing emergency shelter for residents of lower Puna who lost their homes and, in many cases, their livelihoods,” said Jay Ignacio, president of HELCO and a PriMO conference speaker. “We applaud their work every day to help rebuild lives and strengthen the community, and to provide their services with compassion and respect for our community’s most vulnerable populations.”

Since the beginning of the eruption May 3, residents of Leilani Estates, Lanipuna Gardens, Vacationland, Kapoho Beach Lots and the surrounding areas were forced to evacuate their homes as lava forged a path to the ocean. Community groups, county agencies and local businesses partnered with Hope Services to construct a micro-housing project on land leased by Hope Services from Sacred Heart Catholic Church in Pahoa.

In about a month, 20 “tiny” homes were built to provide temporary emergency housing.

“Mahalo to Hawaii Electric Light for their generosity and gift that will enable us to respond to those who most need our help in our community,” said Hope Services CEO Brandee Menino in accepting the donation.

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Hope Services continues to provide housing assistance and financial assistance with rental deposits and rent for qualified displaced households. In addition, the nonprofit is continuing to provide temporary shelter and work on more micro-shelters.

To make a donation, visit http://hopeserviceshawaii.org/take-action/.