In less than 24 hours after Hawaiian Airlines announced an expanded partnership with Hawaiʻi Foodbank and Maui Food Bank, the carrier’s Community and Cultural Relations team coordinated a company-wide food and supply drive to support the West Maui community. 

Team Kōkua volunteers organizing pantry donations at the Hawaiʻi Foodbank.


Seventy employees yesterday volunteered with Team Kōkua to staff collection sites at the airline’s corporate headquarters and Charles I. Elliott Maintenance and Cargo Facility, loaded vans with donations from their colleagues and worked at Hawaiʻi Foodbank to organize donated items for those impacted by the wildfires.

By the end of the day, over 10,000 pounds (about half the weight of a school bus) of goods were donated to Hawaiʻi Foodbank and Maui Food Bank for people displaced by the wildfires. Items included baby formula and food, feminine products, diapers, toiletries, canned proteins and meals, rice and grains, non-perishable snacks, peanut butter and meal bars.

 Team Kōkua
Team Kōkua volunteers working the donation drop-off site at Hawaiian's cargo facility.


“We’re blown away by the incredible turnout of donations from the Hawaiian Airlines ‘ohana yesterday, especially with such short notice,” said Jennifer Onishi, director of corporate relations and partnerships at Hawaiʻi Foodbank.

“Meeting the moment means moving quickly and every act of mālama (care) matters right now,” said Debbie Nakanelua-Richards, director of community and cultural relations at Hawaiian Airlines. “We put out the call for help with our food and supply drive and, without hesitation, our employees jumped to action to do what they could to kōkua (help) West Maui.”

Team Kokua
Debbie Nakanelua-Richards and Manakō Tanaka of Hawaiian's Community and Cultural Relations Team operating the donation van.


Hawaiian will continue to deploy volunteers to help Hawaiʻi Foodbank with sorting and packaging donations being sent to the Maui Food Bank.

To learn more about the partnership, click here.

To donate to or volunteer with the Hawaiʻi Foodbank, click here.