Kōkua Kalihi Valley Comprehensive Family Services (KKV) is a community-organized and community-operated nonprofit corporation dedicated to health and reconciliation in the Kalihi Valley community. It was formed in 1972 by community leaders in response to an absence of accessible and appropriate health services for the valley’s large Asian and Pacific Island immigrant population.
In 2005, KKV entered into a 20 year lease with the State of Hawaiʻi Department of Land and Natural Resources to steward 100-acres in the back of Kalihi valley. With the support of Robert Wood Johnson Foundation’s Active Living by Design funding, the Ho‘oulu ‘Āina Nature Preserve was developed as a KKV program with the mission of being: a welcoming place of refuge where people of all cultures can sustain and propagate the connections between the health of the land and the health of the people.
There are four interwoven program areas at Ho‘oulu ‘Āina: Koa ‘Āina (native reforestation), Mahi ‘Āina (gardening and local food production), Lohe ‘Āina (listening to the land and cultural preservation), and Hoa ‘Āina (providing safe and meaningful access for the community).
Through these programs, the community participates in the revitalization of this 100-acre upland resource offering healthy and therapeutic activity, native reforestation and stewardship projects, local food production and food sovereignty endeavors and a wide diversity of hands-on educational opportunities. As the land is restored to health and productivity, the healing is reciprocal and a healthy, resilient community develops.
Hope for Kids funding will further strengthen and stabilize Ho‘oulu ‘Āina and support the program’s efforts in engaging youth.