News, Events & Social

What’s New


August 2023

This summer, Olohana secured generous support to send a media and cultural facilitation team to Rarotonga, Cook Islands. We brought with us technical expertise and capacity to record the 2023 Global Breadfruit Conference and to record and project for Papaliʻi Dr. Failautusi Avegalio, Jr., Master of Ceremonies at the 2023 Stars of Oceania Awards Ceremony.

We were honored for our work in the areas of media, youth leadership, and healing work categories in acknowledgment of Olohana’s long standing dedication to building community capacity and the inter-generational transfer of knowledge. Specifically, Julie Stowell, owner and president of Lomikai Media (Olohana’s longstanding media partner) and Chris Shaeffer, technical director, Lomikai Media, were presented with their Global Moana Media and Technology Awards; and Bronson Kainoa Azama and Zethan Kawaiola Barros, interns for Olohana Foundation and Lomikai Media, were presented with their Global Moana Youth Leadership and Organization Award.

What resounded most for Chris Shaeffer “was getting to share time and mana’o with other Pacific Islanders. The ocean truly does unite the Pacific Islanders into far more cohesive (if somewhat feisty) family than most who are from elsewhere would expect. It was excellent that we had the opportunity to represent Olohana’s part in this broad family,” he said.




November 14, 2022

The Olohana Foundation is pleased to announce a grant award of $101,000 from the USDA’s Agricultural Marketing Service Local Food Promotion Program (LFPP). The grant will fund Hawaiʻi Tropical Fruits: Adding Value for Shared Abundance for one year and aims to prototype two minimally processed fruit puree products utilizing locally grown, soft-skin fruit that might otherwise go to waste in the absence of a market for them.  The fruit puree products will be delivered through Hawaiʻi Farm to Car and Hawaiʻi Island Food Basket’s CSA DA BOX to local residents including recipients of SNAP. The project promotes food self-sufficiency on the Big Island and increased market access and economic opportunity for local fruit growers.


October 17 & 18, 2022

The Olohana Foundation was a proud co-sponsor of this year’s 2022 Stars of Oceania Awards & Luncheon Ceremony on October 17, 2022. Stars of Oceania honors preeminent individuals, groups, and organizations that reflect the inclusive values that care for Mother Earth with service, courage, and power of Aloha. Dr. Daniel Wildcat, Haskell Indian Nations University, was honored as an Aloha Aina Warrior; Rev. M. Kalani Souza, the late Hank Fergerstrom, and the late Bob Gough were honored for Courage and Aloha. In attendance were royal members from South Pacific Islands, Hawaii’s senate chair the honorable Mike Gabbard, Her Royal Highness Princess Owana Ka’ohelelani La’anui Wilcox Salazar, Ernest K. Wilson, the Regent of University of Hawaii, and Dr. David Lassner, president of the University of Hawaii. Olohana with Lomikai Media provided technical and communications coverage of the event.

The following day on October 18, the annual Global Breadfruit Summit commenced at the Hawaii Convention Center in Honolulu, also with Olohana as a co-sponsoring organization. The conference showcased champions of breadfruit, including those focused on breadfruit research, production, processing and marketing. Olohana with Lomikai Media provided facilitation strategies, cultural expertise around traditional Polynesian agroforestry methods, and media and technical services for documenting the event.


August 22, 2022

The Olohana Foundation is pleased to announce a new collaboration with the Haskell Indian Nations University and the National Center for Atmospheric Research. Olohana has been named a sub-awardee under a new $20 million project spearheaded by Haskell Indian Nations University and funded by the U.S. National Science Foundation (NSF), announced in early August. Olohana will build community technological and communications infrastructure in support of the research hub.


May 1, 2022

The Olohana Foundation is honored to receive operations funding in 2022-2023 from Metabolic Studio at The Annenberg Foundation. Metabolic Studio explores self-sustaining and self-diversifying systems of exchange that feed emergent properties that regenerate the life web. Their support of the Olohana Foundation’s general operating expense budget allows Olohana to further its impact in community capacity building.


Oldies But Goodies


July 4-17, 2021

We are excited to announce our partnership with Heirs to Our Oceans in bringing SEAL 2021 to the Hamakua Coast of Hawai’i.  The mission of the SEAL Summit is to inspire the next generation of environmental and empathetic leaders.

Hawai’i offers a gift! 11 of the 13 major ecological zones on the planet are present on Moku O Keawe, as it is uniquely positioned in the middle of the largest body of water on the planet with low-lying coral atolls, snow-capped mountains, tropical rainforests and high altitude woodlands, sweeping grasslands and coastal tide pools, estuaries, waterways, and marshes, active volcanoes, deserts, deep coastal harbors, and shallow channels.

This year’s theme is A Source of Hope.


Youth education and empowerment is a systems-level solution to the greatest challenges faced today. A center-piece of the H2OO movement, SEAL, is hosted each summer in a location where youth can live and learn in close connection with one another and the waterways of the surrounding community. The unique location this year will be at Ahu Lani Retreat Center in Honokaa, HI. Learn more about this program at the SEAL website.



Olohana Foundation together with the Honoka’a High & Intermediate School and Kumu Ramsay Taum propose a project consisting of a series of workshops to teach Natural Movement Self Defense (NMSD) as developed by Kumu Ramsay Taum, founder of the Life Enhancement Institute of the Pacific and long-time Olohana affiliate.NMSD is a method of self-protection based on movements and gestures you already know and use in daily life at home, work, and school that can be used to break contact and protect oneself or others in the case of an assault. NMSD integrates the values, principles and philosophies of Lua and Aloha.


In Celebration of Water!

H2021 Youth Water Summit

We are proudly partnering with Heirs to Our Oceans
in holding a YOUTH WATER SUMMIT kicking off the
UN OCEAN DECADE (2021-2030)!

Youth from around the world will “dive deeply into” water at a pivotal time for the next generation’s future and our shared Blue Planet, and they will have an opportunity to win a prize meet in Hawai’i this summer!

H2O21 Water Summit will connect, educate, empower, and inspire youth leaders while engaging them in critical messaging for the world today.

The Summit will run on a virtual platform for youth around the world meeting for 2 hours for 4 consecutive weekend days.

  • The Americas through Africa, we’re meeting Saturdays Feb 13 – Mar 6
  • Asia through Oceania, we’re meeting Sundays Feb 14 – Mar 7
  • And, we’ll be participating on World Water Day H2021 podcast on Mar 22!

Learn about this worldwide event and how you can join us at





The World Water Gathering is a global sharing of all the world’s cultures and wisdom’s on water converging together on World Water Day, 22 March 2021.

A 24-hour broadcast covering every time zone, every continent, all peoples, all knowledge systems, all voices, all ages, to share one thing… your message from water.

With partners Unify and Tribute Earth, the Olohana Foundation joins LeanInto.Love, the New Water Generation, the School of Social Alchemy and others in this world-wide event in celebration of World Water Day.


graphic image links to the YouTube program called Uh? Unko Hank, Question Everything

Uh? Unko Hank, Question Everything!

With Rev. M. Kalani Souza and Unko Hank Fergerstrom

Don’t miss out! Subscribe to UHQE/YouTube on the Lomikai Media channel >



image of M. Kalani Souza on the left and Veda Austin on the right, taken during their virtual conversationThe Secret Intelligence of Water with Veda Austin and guest Rev. M. Kalani Souza

Share an hour with New Zealand water researcher and educator Veda Austin, (Tainui of Maori descent) and M. Kalani Souza as they “discuss the essence of water from a multifaceted perspective. Listen to Kalani share some of his Grandfather’s wisdom… But mostly, feel into what Kalani is saying because,” Veda says, “Water speaks through him and has chosen to do so with great purpose.” October 12, 2020.


two men holding a flag, viewed from the backHindsite 2020

We’re pleased to present a new non-denominational, faith-based weekly program with Rev. M. Kalani Souza and guests, highlighting the impacts of the previous week’s news and how it affects our communities, our families, and our regenerative capacity. It is broadcast live on most Sunday mornings. Subscribe at YouTube>



flierThe Practice of Positive Change: An Indigenous Approach

This is a free series of six conversational online meetings presented by Kapi’olani Laronal and Claire Pavlik Purgus, board member and associate director respectively of the Olohana Foundation, with Sophie Mendelson, MS Agricultural Education & Agroforestry, beginning June 25, 2020.

In the wake of the tragedy of George Floyd many companies are messaging their support for Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion (DEI). However, some don’t know where to begin. This series is for those who are interested in learning and developing new ideas for DEI approaches in our public and private sector spaces.

The objective of these six weekly conversations is to develop a working group of committed individuals and to introduce an approach to working with Communities of Color. This webinar is organized in 2-Parts: 1) as a group, learning from Indigenous leaders and scholars; and 2) engaging in smaller group discussions to develop ideas for DEI initiatives for individuals in their specific organizations.

Materials from this program are available on the PPCIA webpage.


A FREE Session! Learn about the 10’x25’ Micro Food Forest that can fit into your yard

Tuesday March 10, 2020, 10am at the Hawaii Convention Center, Honolulu, HI

Community directed long-term partnership with UH NDPTC, PRiMO IKE HUI, NOAA CSC/PSC, IPN, AgroforestryNet, Lomikai Media and The Olohana Foundation for the implementation of regenerative adaptation strategies to address disaster preparedness and mitigate resource degradation at household scales supported through Virtually Interconnected Community learning curriculum.

Register by sending your name, contact information, and “VICTREE Gardens” to



Kalani Souza offers keynote address for MLK day 2019, Christ the King Church, Maui

We Shall Stand, Martin Luther King Jr. Day 2019

Rev. M. Kalani Souza gave a special guest presentation for MLK Jr. Day on January 21, 2019 at Christ the King Church in Kahului for the 7th Annual Martin Luther King Jr. Interfaith Service. This year’s theme, “We Shall Stand” honors Dr. Rev. King Jr.’s legacy of equality, nonviolence, and faith while calling upon Maui’s community to rise together to defend our future.





Love & Liberation with Olivia Clementine


M. Kalani Souza with Olivia Clementine:
How Much Sin Can We Hold?


For the Wild, Kalani Souza with Ayana Young


M. Kalani Souza with Ayana Young on
For the Wild World:
Click to listen>Personal Preparedness in Advance

Our survival demands our action and engagement and make no mistake, our actions, no matter how small, either add to the collective harm or collective healing.

Do we choose to be predators or participants in life?




Folk music
The Other Favorites

The Other Favorites Hawaii Island Tour 2018

Check out The Other Favorites in Hawaii for the first time.

March 8, 2018, Thursday – “Hiilani EcoHouse” in Kukuihaele 6pm Potluck, 7pm concert

March 10, 2018, Saturday – Waimea house concert 6pm

March 14, 2018, Wednesday – “Waimea Brewhaus” 6pm.






Kalani’s January 2018 Visit to New England

Dartmouth College Annual Martin Luther King Jr. Day

Members of the Olohana team, Kalani Souza, Sarah Purgus, and Alex Meffert visited New England in January 2018, stopping for presentations at Dartmouth College, Zen Center North Shore, Brandeis University, and The Grange, in Montague, Mass.


Yale University Annual International Society of Tropical Foresters Conference

Kalani Souza participated as a panelist at their annual forestry conference, “Attending to Socio-ecological Complexity in Tropical Forest Landscapes,” and other events around campus including “Building Working Relationships with Indigenous People for Environmental Management,” at the Native American Cultural Center.


 A New Story For Humanity with Kalani SouzaA New Story For Humanity:
Change the Story, Change the World

“A New Story for Humanity” is a documentary film about the New Story Summit which took place at the FindHorn Foundation in Scotland in late September 2014. It was “a sold-out multicultural, multi-generational enquiry into a new story for humanity, attended by change makers and activists from over 50 countries.” The film premiered in 2016 and is currently being screened in countries around the world. Olohana Foundation’s Founding Director, Kalani Souza, was invited to participate in the summit and was among the key speakers featured in the film.





10000 Homegrown FoodForests, a project of the Olohana Foundation


The Olohana Foundation and team are proud to announce
1002 Homegrown FoodForests (aka #10KFoodForests). Working with 100 communities in Hawaii, the U.S. mainland, U.S.-affiliated islands, and internationally, in commemoration of the 100-year anniversary of Victory Gardens, we will plant 10,000 food forests and conduct a national indigenous phenology study. It is a proposal to the MacArthur Foundation for their 2016 100&Change challenge. Learn more>


Olohana team with Reynaldo Morales class, Jan27,2017

Teaching Indigeneity and Sustainability
with University of Wisconsin-Madison

Members of the Olohana Foundation and Intertribal Council on Utility Policy were guest lecturers in late January 2017 at the Nelson Institute for Environmental Studies at University of Wisconsin Madison. The Olohana team broadcast from Hawaii using a multiple-camera setup with Bob Gough on webcam from North Dakota for an interactive presentation and Q&A with students in the Seminar Environmental Studies 402, INDIGENEITY AND SUSTAINABILITY: Cross Pollination of Transnational Indigenous Knowledge Systems led by Professor Alberto Vargas and Project Assistant, Reynaldo Morales.



Hamakua Uprising... an evening of music with M. Kalani Souza and friends at Hi'ilani EcoHouse in Honoka'a on Sunday, January 8, 2017! He was joined by Dagan Bernstein, Thomas Kearns, Adam Crowe, Jeff Quin, Chris Shaeffer, Larry Miller, Brad Bordessa and others.

Public Community Event, Honoka’a, HI

Hamakua Uprising… an evening of music with M. Kalani Souza and friends was held at Hi’ilani EcoHouse in Honoka’a on Sunday, January 8, 2017.  He was joined by musicians Dagan Bernstein, Thomas Kearns, Adam Crowe, Jeff Quin, Chris Shaeffer, Larry Miller, Brad Bordessa and others.



Watch and listen to Kalani sing “Waiting,” a song he wrote for his mother, Lorraine, 17 years ago and which he sang at this event. Kalani is accompanied by Maraya Ben-Joseph on fiddle, Sarah Purgus on ukulele, Chris Shaeffer and Alex Meffert on guitars.


IPCCWG 2016 conference, Haskell Indian Nations University





The Indigenous Peoples Climate Change Working Group at Haskell Indian Nations University held their 2016 conference on September 22-23, 2016. The conference, which marked IPCCWG’s 10-year anniversary, was titled “Climate CHANGED: Reflections on our PAST, PRESENT and Future Situations.” Kalani Souza presented on the topic of “Climate Changed: Envisioning the Future.”   Conference agenda>

2016 Hawaii Pacific Global Breadfruit Summit

Pacific Business Center
Program, University of Hawaii’s

2016 Hawaii Pacific Global Breadfruit Summit

August 27-31, 2016
Polynesian Cultural Center Imax Theater Auditorium, Laie, Oahu

The Summit brings together national and international experts on breadfruit from ground to table, including the most current research developments regarding the health aspects of the fruit in curtailing diabetes and obesity rampant in the territories.

Learn more at the Summit website>

Protect Our Public Lands Tour 2016

Livelihoods Knowledge Exchange Network’s

2016 Protect Our Public Lands Tour:
For A Just & Renewable Energy Future

The 2016 Protect Our Public Lands Tour (POPLA) took place from July 18-31, 2016. More than twenty indigenous activists toured locations in Arizona, New Mexico, Oklahoma, Illinois, and at City Hall in Philadelphia, Penn. Tour participants gave testimony at the Summit for a Clean Energy Revolution on July 23. John Foran, who was there, writes about the experience in “The Power of Indigenous Activists at the Summit of the Climate Justice Movement.”

The video below shows images from LiKEN’s story-catching during the POPLA tour by Paper Rocket Productions and the POPLA caravaners. Julie Maldonado, LiKEN Research Director, describes the power of equal collaboration between Indigenous science and scholarly science.

(You must enable Flash Player to watch.)

The video was produced as part of a panel on collaboration with affected communities was moderated by Natasha Udu-Gama of the American Geophysical Union and features Julie Maldonado, Juan Declet-Barreto of the Union Of Concerned Scientists, and Vivek Maru of Namati. It took place in Washington D.C. during the 25-26 July meeting of the Science and Human Rights Coalition of the American Association for the Advancement of Sciences (AAAS).

Learn more about the tour at the LiKEN Facebook page.

Rising Voices "Storytelling for Solutions" RV4 group photo 2016 (photo courtesy Craig Elevitch)

Rising Voices “Storytelling for Solutions”

Kristin M. Wegner blogs from Rising Voices “Storytelling for Solutions,” a three-day summit in Hawaii, July 6-8, 2016: