Kaua‘i Island Utility Cooperative members can now make a small monthly gift that could lead to significant donations for charitable causes on Kauaʻi, according to a news release by the co-op.

“The Makana Program is the gift of giving to people in need in our community,” says Teofilo Phil Tacbian, Chair of the KIUC Charitable Foundation. He said donations received through the program will be given to the KIUC Charitable Foundation and shared via grants with nonprofits on Kauaʻi.

“For less than a $1 a month, you can make a big difference,” Tacbian said.

The Makana program is completely voluntary. To participate, KIUC members agree to round up their electric bill to the next highest dollar and donate that amount to the program. For example, if your bill for the month was $150.85, you could round it up to $151.00 and donate the extra 15 cents to the Makana program. The rounded amount is shown on your monthly electric statement.

The maximum amount that a member can contribute in a year’s time would be $11.88. Members could also elect to make additional monthly donations or a one-time contribution. Donations are tax deductible. A summary of yearly contributions will be reported to participating members on the December billing statement.

Funds donated through the Makana program are administered by the KIUC Charitable Foundation: a nonprofit organization established in 2002. A volunteer committee oversees the application review process and decisions are made by this committee based on funds available and the community impact of requests made. Organizations who have received grants from the foundation include Kauaʻi Veterans Museum, Kumu’s Cupboard, Leadership Kauaʻi, Kauaʻi Academy of Creative Arts and Catholic Charities of Kauaʻi. The Foundation also provides annual scholarships to students at Kauaʻi Community College.

To sign up for Makana, visit the KIUC website, website.kiuc.coop, and go to the “Makana Program” tab on the “Community” page. You may also enroll through your Smart Hub account. Members may cancel their enrollment at any time.

Tacbian said organizations wishing to apply for a grant from the Foundation may do so at any time. An application for funds can be found on the KIUC website under the “Makana Program” tab.