By Léo Azambuja

Edie Savita Renae 1

From left to right, Edie Ignacio Neumiller, Savita Kumar, and Renae Hamilton.

The YWCA Women’s Center in Lihu‘e has been in operation since the end of last summer, but it was only in February that the nonprofit’s newest building had its official grand opening, complete with a blessing ceremony.

“It is enabling us to enhance services while offering something to build on and grow from here,” YWCA Executive Director Renae Hamilton said of the new facility adjacent to the YWCA’s administrative office.

Kahu Kaeo Bradford blessed the $2 million property, which was made possible with massive support from the community, including grants and donations from businesses and individuals.

Maisha Shanti Emiko Giulia

From left to right, Shanti Manzano, of Koloa, Maisha Sellers, of Kekaha, Emiko Meyers, of Lihu‘e and Giulia Rapone, of Kalaheo.

Melia Dudgeon

Melia Dudgeon playing the piano.

Heather Kuulei 1

YWCA board members Heather Singleton, left, and Kuulei Santos.

Frances Alice Julia Renae

From left to right, Frances Forde, former YWCA Board President Alice Fix, YWCA Administrative Assistant Julia Adolpho and YWCA Executive Director Renae Hamilton.

Kahu Ron

Kahu Kaeo Bradford, of Lihu‘e, and Ron Wiley, of Kong Radio.

Hamilton said three-quarters of the building are already paid off, and hopefully future donations will cover the remaining cost for the facility so it can be mortgage-free.

Wanda Kaulana

Governor’s liaison Wanda Shibata, and Kaulana Finn, representative for U.S. Rep. Tulsi Gabbard.

Savita Mayor Wanda

Savita Kumar, left, Mayor Bernard Carvalho Jr. and Wanda Shibata.

Shauna Justin Lisa

County Prosecutor Justin Kollar with Deputy Prosecutors Shauna Lee Cahill, left, and Lisa Arin.

Marge Melinda Caroll 1

From left to right, Zonta Club of Kaua‘i member Marge Akana, former president of Zonta Club of Kaua‘i Melinda Uohara and Zonta Club of Hanalei member Caroll Gerow.

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