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Kanu Hawaii & Hawaiʻi State Department of Education take action to strengthen commitment to environmental stewardship

Businesses and groups asked to rally 50,000 signatures by 2023

This pledge is an investment in the leadership of tomorrow and a promise to our future generations through a personal commitment today.”
— Kanu Hawaii Executive Director Keone Kealoha
HONOLULU, HAWAII, UNITED STATES, April 13, 2022 / -- The Hawaiʻi State Department of Education and local nonprofit Kanu Hawaii have partnered to collect 10,000 pledge signatures from students and families by Earth Day 2022, April 22, toward a 50,000-signature goal by 2023. The “Pledge to Our Keiki” invites residents and visitors to assume greater responsibility in environmental stewardship through personal actions.

To sign the online pledge, the public can go to The pledge, which was created by students from across Hawaii, is as follows:

From our elders we have learned we are part of the environment, not above it. The life, lands, and waters are more than just our surroundings, they are our family. From our children we will learn that Hawai‘i is not inherited from our ancestors but borrowed from our future generations.

So when you are welcomed here, you become part of this ‘ohana that is responsible for us and our island home too. Just as we, nā keiki o ka ‘āina, the children of Hawai‘i, pledge to care for these islands, we ask that you make this pledge to us:

For a rare and endangered place, where a destructive foreign species is introduced every day—I will bring only what is invited and be mindful of where I explore.

For an island community that defines wealth not by what is kept, but what is shared—I will give my respect and leave what is not mine to take.

For an indigenous culture that has evolved with these islands, both unique and intertwined in their existence—I will experience sacred places and practices with a bowed head and open heart.

For this birthplace of aloha that typically welcomes more visitors than has residents—I will live aloha, tread lightly amongst this beauty and make it cleaner than I found it.

For the Hawaiian people, whose ancestors sailed here using only the stars to guide them in search of islands to sustain them—I will learn from your legacy and support your ongoing voyage toward sustainability.

“This pledge speaks to our most imperative values: care for the environment, community and our sense of aloha,” says Kanu Hawaii Executive Director Keone Kealoha. “This pledge is an investment in the leadership of tomorrow and a promise to our future generations through a personal commitment today. The Department of Education partnership speaks to this vision and belief that this must be an educational focus and one we should proactively invest in.”

“We owe it to our next generation to do all that we can to ensure our island home remains a special place. Embracing this student-driven pledge is a meaningful step in that direction that the Hawai‘i State Department of Education is proud to take with Kanu Hawaii,” interim DOE Superintendent Keith Hayashi said. “This commitment aligns with our belief system under Nā Hopena A‘o (HĀ), a framework of outcomes that reflects our core values. Grounded by HĀ, we work as a system to develop the competencies that strengthen a sense of belonging, responsibility, excellence, aloha, total well-being and Hawai'i — or BREATH — in ourselves, our students and others.”

Nonprofits, schools, businesses, government agencies and community organizations are needed to mobilize signature drives for the online pledge as part of Volunteer Week Hawaii 2022 and National Volunteer Week. Led by Kanu Hawaii, Volunteer Week Hawaii will be celebrated from April 17 to 23 and features more than 300 in-person and virtual volunteer opportunities statewide including this pledge drive and E Ala E, a worldwide oli (Hawaiian chant).


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Jacque Vaughn
Transcendence Pacific
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Pledge to our Keiki