By Tommy Noyes
Would you like to get more actively involved in your community? Here are some opportunities ranging from the comfort of your home to Na Pali.
Hui O Mana Ka Pu‘uwai, an outrigger canoe paddling club based at the Wailua River excels at youth engagement. “Pu‘uwai Canoe Club coaches are skilled volunteers,” offered Brian Curll. “Practice develops paddler’s stroke, teamwork, endurance, confidence, self-discipline, and resilience.” On March 17, it’s free Splash Day for ages 7 to 17, from 8 a.m. to 1 p.m., potluck at the Wailua River Park. Engage with Kaua‘i Lifeguards, Fire and Rescue, Civil Defense, Kaua‘i Path bike safety, SUP, OC-1, and OC-6 lessons. Contact (808) 635-6311 or Bcurll@aol.com.
Twice monthly, Mark Hubbard coordinates Kalalau Trail maintenance sessions. “The volunteers who maintain the Kalalau Trail enjoy the view, the hard physical work with dramatic results, and the appreciation expressed by most of the 700-1000 people who are on the first two miles of the trail each day,” said Hubbard, who can be reached at (808) 639-4746.
The Friends of Kamalani public information officer Kurt Indvik suggests, “Make a contribution to, and a connection with, the Kaua‘i community by participating in volunteer events organized by the Friends of Kamalani. Our work days are fun and safe for people of all ages, working together in Lydgate Park to help preserve the swimming areas and beaches, playgrounds, and sacred Hawaiian cultural sites — wonderful public resources for all who live and visit here.” Call or text Tommy Noyes at (808) 639-1018 for details.
“Healthcare professionals and/or those interested in healthcare issues join the Kaua‘i Medical Reserve Corps (KMRC) to address the ongoing public health needs of our community through education and outreach,” said Department of Health Preparedness Planner Lauren Guest. “They are trained and prepared to assist our island’s response during a natural disaster or public health emergency.” Info at (808) 241-3555.
The Kaua‘i Amateur Radio Club (KARC) attracts members seeking a fail-safe connection to the wide world. “Amateur radio clubs have existed for 100 years,” said Elaine Albertson, KARC’s public information officer. “Because ham radio does not depend on the electrical power grid or any other system, it is the first line of communication in disasters. Folks get licensed so they can help when it really matters … and have a lot of fun talking to the world.” Info at www.kauaiarc.org.
“Community Emergency Response Team (CERT) members improve Kauai’s resilience,” said Firefighter John Cornell with the Kaua‘i Fire Department. “KFD trains residents to prepare for and respond to natural disasters. The training skills include fire safety, search and rescue, team organization, and medical operations. Using this training, CERT members can help their community, and assist professional responders during disasters. All of these classes are free to the public.” Contact Firefighters Jason Poloa or John Cornell at (808) 645-0661, firstname.lastname@example.org or www.kauai.gov/CERT/.
Like Rotary, Lions, Zonta and other well-known service organizations, these groups make our community stronger and their volunteers benefit from being a vital part of our island home.
- Tommy Noyes is Kaua‘i Path’s executive director, a League of American Bicyclists Certified Instructor and active with the Kaua‘i Medical Reserve Corps.