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Ka‘ū News Briefs, Monday, December 21, 2020

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Visitors and the new summit eruption at Kīlauea Overlook. Photo by Janice Wei/NPS

A SPECTACULAR NEW ERUPTION AT THE SUMMIT of Kīlauea volcano is drawing throngs of visitors to Hawaiʻi Volcanoes National Park, eager to see the billowing plume of gas and steam by day and the reflection of glowing lava deep within the crater after dark. The event is the subject of a Big Island Video News piece, released today. It includes cultural and scientific aspects of the eruption.
    Shortly after 9:30 p.m. on Sunday, Dec. 20, USGS Hawaiian Volcano Observatory detected glow within Halmemaʻumaʻu Crater at the summit of Kīlauea volcano, heralding a new eruption. Multiple fissures opened on the crater walls, and lava cascaded into the water lake, boiling it away. Lava fountains were observed on USGS webcams, with the tallest at 50 meters (165 feet). It is the first time lava has been present on the island of Hawaiʻi since the dramatic 2018 Lower East Rift Zone eruption and summit collapse at Kīlauea. 
    USGS HVO elevated the Kīlauea volcano alert level to WARNING and its aviation color code to RED. USGS detected a magnitude-4.4 earthquake 14 kilometers (8.7 miles) beneath the volcano's south flank on Sunday at 10:36 p.m. 
New summit eruption evaporated the lake in the crater which began
filing to make a new lava lake. Photo by Janice Wei/NPS
    All areas that were open in the park before the new eruption began remain open. Vantage points for viewing the new eruption include Wahinekapu (Steaming Bluff), Kīlauea Overlook, Keanakākoʻi, Waldron Ledge and other overlooks along Crater Rim Trail.
    The park remains open 24 hours a day, and the public is reminded to stay safe by following these precautions: 
    Volcanic eruptions can be hazardous and change at any time. Stay on marked trails and overlooks, and avoid earth cracks and cliff edges. Do not enter closed areas.
    Hazardous volcanic gases are billowing out the crater and present a danger to everyone, especially people with heart or respiratory problems, infants, young children and pregnant women.
    Slow down and drive safely. Expect long waits for parking spaces at popular vantage points like Kīlauea Overlook.
    Maintain social distance of six feet from others and wear a mask to reduce the spread of COVID-19.
    At 4,000 feet (1,219 meters), the summit of Kīlauea can be chilly at any time. Bring a rain jacket, wear long pants and closed-toe shoes.
    Hawaiʻi Volcanoes National Park Superintendent Rhonda Loh said, "The return of lava to the summit of Kīlauea is a natural wonder, but we need the public to be fully aware that we are in the middle of the COVID-19 pandemic and to recreate responsibly, maintain social distance and to wear a mask.
Sunrise this morning at Kīlauea Caldera. USGS Photo
    "We want to keep the park open for all to experience this new phase of volcanic activity, and we need visitors to follow safety guidelines that keep everyone safe. We continue to work with USGS scientists to receive the latest volcanic updates, and remind visitors that the eruptive activity and accessibility could change at any time," said Loh. 
    The National Weather Service warned people from Kapāpala through Pāhala and Punaluʻu to Nāʻālehu and Ocean View that trade winds could bring ash to their neighborhoods. It was later determined that much of the initial eruption was liquid, rather than ash. Ashfall was seen on vehicles and buildings in Kaʻū. 
    The eruption has stabilized and the USGS warning has been changed to watch and aviation color code from red to orange.

To read comments, add your own, and like this story, see Facebook. Follow us on Instagram and Twitter. See our Fresh Food on The Kaʻū Calendar and our latest print edition at kaucalendar.com.

Kaʻū Hospital's long-term residents and staff will receive COVID
vaccines through the supply sent to Hilo Medical Center.
Photo by Julia Neal
THE FIRST SHIPMENT OF COVID-19 VACCINE ARRIVED TODAY at Kaʻū Hospital's sister facility, Hilo Medical Center. Spokesperson Elena Cabatu said the staff has been "working around the clock to set up our vaccination clinic this week. Sign up and registration are being rolled out today for COVID frontline workers first and will be opened up to other employees Tuesday afternoon."
    Kaʻū Hospital administrator Merilyn Harris said she expects that all her staff and long term patients, who are willing, will be vaccinated by mid-January. She said Kaʻū Hospital staff, residents and the community will be able to receive vaccinations through Hilo Medical Center at Kaʻū Hospital over time. She said the vaccine is good for five days once it is thawed, but only good for six hours once it is mixed with saline to prepare it for inoculations.
    In addition to the hospital and medical center, CVS, which has a pharmacy in Pāhala, said it will offer immunizations throughout the state.
    As of 10 a.m. Monday, Hilo Medical Center was treating two COVID patients in its ICU, with adequate staffing and PPE. The Medical Center issued statements from its medical staff, sharing their thoughts, reassurances and encouragement to take the vaccine. See the links for messages from: Chad Shibuya, Infection Prevention DirectorDr. Judy FitzGerald, Emergency Department Physician and Medical Director for Hawaii County EMSDr. Lovina Sabnani, ENT Physician and Chief of StaffDr. Daniel Hudak, Surgeon; and Rae Newpher, ER Nurse and Nursing Instructor.
Long term residents who use the garden area of Kaʻū
Hospital will receive COVID vaccines soon.
Photo by Julia Neal
    According to Civil Defense: "The Coronavirus cases count and fatalities continue to dramatically increase across the nation and are projected to continue at the current rate or worse through early next year. Be aware that we continue to have Coronavirus cases within our communities and we must all do our part in exercising the precautions that will keep us safe. The news of the vaccine is very good. Healthcare providers and first responders will receive vaccinations this week, but please be aware that availability to the general public is still months away. We must rely on the preventive measures in place to keep us safe through this holiday season."
    For the latest figures on COVID for the state and Hawaiʻi County, go to: The Department of Health. See East Hawaiʻi Region Fact Sheet on testing, beds, ventilators, and PPE resources.
     
To read comments, add your own, and like this story, see Facebook. Follow us on Instagram and Twitter. See our Fresh Food on The Kaʻū Calendar and our latest print edition at kaucalendar.com.

SUDDEN, SHARP REDUCTIONS IN THE STATE'S OPERATING BUDGET are reflected in the 2021-2023 Fiscal Biennium budget unveiled today by Gov. David Ige. His budget will go to the Hawaiʻi Legislature.
    The budget includes cuts in both the operating and capital improvements program budgets in the next two fiscal years. The state anticipates a $1.4 billion shortfall each year of this two-year period. "This budget represents sudden, sharp reductions to revenues because of the pandemic's impact on the state's
The flag of the Governor of Hawaiʻi, who released his proposed
budget for 2021-2023 today.
economy and the tax revenue that funds government services and programs. Our economy will recover, and the state's budget will normalize if we contain COVID-19, preserving the health of both residents and visitors," said the governor. "The key to this remains the 3W's – wearing masks, washing hands and watching distances, as before; and we can now add the vaccine as it becomes available."
    Ige noted that anticipated Congressional action may have an impact on certain spending and said, "I'm hopeful that federal aid will allow us to refrain from imposing furloughs until later." He also announced that he may be seeking emergency appropriations in separate legislation to support COVID-19 mitigation efforts such as vaccination implementation, hospital surge staffing and the Safe Travels program. Prior to receiving the new federal aid, these mitigation measures were expected to cost $205 million in FY 21 (beginning in January), and $182 million in FY 22.
    The Operating Budget includes the following requests: Add debt-service payments of $398.6 million over the two fiscal years for the Dept. of Education, University of Hawaiʻi, and other state CIP projects. Decrease health premium payments by $603.3 million over two fiscal years, primarily due to the suspension of Other Post-Employment Benefits prefunding. It also decreases retirement benefits funding by $19.2 million over the two fiscal years. 
    The total Operating Budget from all methods of financing includes $15.417 billion in FY 22, and $15.521 billion in FY 23. This represents net decreases below the current level appropriated for FY 21 of 1.8% ($276.4 million) and 1.1% ($171.8 million), respectively.
    The Request for General Funds is $7.686 billion in FY 22, and $7.798 billion in FY 23. This represents net decreases below the current level appropriated for FY 21 of 4.5% ($361.9 million) and 3.1% ($249.6 million), respectively.
    The Education Budget
 for public schools and University of Hawaiʻi is presented by the governor with a note of hope that the federal relief bill will render some of the planned cuts and furloughs unnecessary.
    "I have made education a priority because our public schools provide a path to prosperity and success for our students. However, I am unable to leave these programs untouched without decimating the rest of state government, especially when many of our health and social service programs are needed now more than ever. To fund programs that assist citizens in need of food, shelter and jobs, and to ensure public safety, the education budget must be trimmed," said Ige.
    The Dept. of Education is 21% of the FY 21 general fund budget, the second-largest behind Budget and Finance, which includes fringe benefits and debt service for the state. This budget includes:
A reduction of about 70 positions and $165.6 million in both FY 22 and FY 23 for various DOE programs. At the university level, the budget includes reductions of over $70 million over the two fiscal years. 
    The Capital Improvements Program budget includes $1.236 billion in FY 22 and $1.116 billion in FY 23. Of these amounts, the request for General Obligation bond funds total: $679.4 million and $512.1 million, respectively. This is nearly $800 million in G.O. bonds less in FY 22 and FY 23 than in the previous biennium. The Capital Improvements Program Budget represents the investments the state will make in high-quality infrastructure projects that are essential to the economic vitality and quality of life in Hawaiʻi. "These investments create jobs and sustain our construction industry. This year, we are prioritizing essential CIP projects to limit debt-service costs and preserve the state's flexibility to handle future economic shocks," said Gov. Ige. See more on the budget in Tuesday's Kaʻū News Briefs.

To read comments, add your own, and like this story, see Facebook. Follow us on Instagram and Twitter. See our Fresh Food on The Kaʻū Calendar and our latest print edition at kaucalendar.com.

HAWAIʻI ISLAND REPORTS 13 NEW COVID CASES today. The average daily new case rate over the last two weeks for Hawaiʻi Island is 12. There have been no fatalities reported on-island for more than four weeks. 

Onset of COVID-19 cases in the last 14 days, by zip code. Gray

areas have populations less than 1,000. White is zero cases.

Yellow is one to 10 cases. Light orange is 11-50 cases. Dark

orange is 51-200 cases. Department of Health map

    
New cases reported statewide today total 134, with 96 on Oʻahu, 14 on Maui, and two on Kauaʻi, and four residents diagnosed out-of-state. The average daily case rate for the state is 129 over the last two weeks.
    Since the pandemic began, 49 deaths have been reported on Hawaiʻi Island. At least 282 people have died in the state, none reported today. 
    Since the pandemic began, there have been 20,351 total COVID cases in the state. Oʻahu has reported 17,158 total cases, Hawaiʻi 1,816, Maui 785, Lanaʻi 106, Molokaʻi 22, and Kauaʻi 138. Residents diagnosed while out-of-state, 326. Statewide, 1,413 people have been hospitalized since the pandemic began. 
    Volcano zip code 96785 has reported no cases in the last 14 days. 
    In the last 14 days, less than ten active cases have been reported in zip code 96704, which includes Miloliʻi; zip code 96737, which includes Ocean View; zip code 96772, which includes Nāʻālehu, Waiʻōhinu, and Discovery Harbour; Kaʻū zip code 96777, which includes Pāhala; and Volcano zip codes 96718 and 96785. 
    In the last 14 days, 46 cases have been reported in Hilo zip code 96720, 46 in Kona zip code 96740. 
    See the Hawaiʻi County COVID-19 webpage, coronavirus-response-county-of-hawaii-hawaiicountygis.hub.arcgis.com. Report violators of COVID-19 safety protocols or quarantine to non-emergency at 935-3311. Hawaiʻi Island police continue enforcement of preventative policies. 
    Cumulative COVID-19 case count in the U.S. is more than 18,035,209. The death toll is more than 319,364. Worldwide, more than 77.36 million total COVID-19 cases have been reported. The death toll is more than 1,702,596.

To read comments, add your own, and like this story, see Facebook. Follow us on Instagram and Twitter. See our Fresh Food on The Kaʻū Calendar and our latest print edition at kaucalendar.com.


directory for farms, ranches, takeout. Print edition of The Kaʻū Calendar is 
free, with 7,500 distributed on stands and to all postal addresses throughout 
Kaʻū, from Miloliʻi through Volcano throughout the district. Read online at 
kaucalendar.com and facebook.com/kaucalendar. To advertise your 
business or your social cause, contact kaucalendarads@gmail.com.
Daily, weekly, and monthly recurring Kaʻū and Volcano Events, Meetings, Entertainment, Exercise, Meditation, and more are listed at kaucalendar.com.

IN-PERSON EVENTS

Walk-Through Living Nativity at Nāʻālehu United Methodist Church on Thursday, Dec. 24. Across the street from the Post Office, visitors and friends wearing masks can enter in small groups and proceed between the three scenes in the Christmas story outside around the church. Everyone is welcome. Attendees may bring a can for the Foodbank, which will be collected to give to families in need in the community.

Ocean View Drive-In shows movies each Friday and Saturday at 6:30 p.m. Gates open at 4 p.m. Once the car park area is full, gates will be closed. There will be refreshments on sale, such as Thai Grindz, popcorn, and candy. No entry or membership fee; donations accepted. Attendees must join Ocean View Theater Club on Facebook. For details, see the Ocean View Community Market and Outdoor Theater Facebook page.  

Visit a Volcano Artist Hui studio by appointment during the holiday season. See VolcanoVillageArtistsHui.com or Instagram: @VolcanoArtHui for updates and individual artists' contact information.

Go to Christmas in the Country 21st Annual Wreath Exhibition through Thursday, Dec. 31 at Volcano Art Center Gallery in Hawai‘i Volcanoes National Park. Walk the distanced paths through Volcano Art Gallery Wednesday through Sunday, 9 a.m. to 4 p.m. Park entrance fees apply. See volcanoartcenter.org, call 967-8222. 

Drive or stroll past the Christmas decorated cottages at Kīlauea Military Camp in Hawaiʻi Volcanoes National Park and vote for the Holiday Challenge Winner. The annual event is a friendly decorating competition between KMC employees. It ends New Years Day.

Golf and Social Memberships for Discovery Harbour Golf Course and its Clubhouse. The new Club offers Social Memberships, with future use of the clubhouse and current use of the pickleball courts as well as walking and running on specified areas of the golf course before 8 a.m. and after 3 p.m. to enjoy the panoramic ocean views. Golf memberships range from unlimited play for the avid golfer to casual play options. Membership is required to play and practice golf on the course. All golf memberships include Social Membership amenities. Membership fees are designed to help underwrite programs and improvements to the facilities. Call 808-731-5122 or stop by the Clubhouse during business hours,  daily at 94-1581 Kaulua Circle. Email clugatdiscoveryharbour@gmail.com. See The Club at Discovery Harbour Facebook page.

Hike one of the many open trails, drive to the overlooks in Hawaiʻi Volcanoes National Park at Volcano and Kahuku units. See nps.gov/havo.

Take a Guided Nature Walkthrough Nature Trail & Sculpture Garden, Mondays, 9:30 a.m. at Volcano Art Center Niʻaulani Campus in Volcano Village. No reservations for five or fewer – limited to ten people. Free; donations appreciated. Email programs@volcanoartcenter.org. Garden is open to walk through at one's own pace, 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. weekdays. volcanoartcenter.org, 967-8222 

Christmas Day Dinner and New Year's Day Brunch are offered at Kīlauea Military Camp. Both dine-in and grab-and-go require reservations; call 808-967-8356. Christmas Day Dinner reservations for to-go orders deadline was Dec. 14. New Year's Day brunch is tentatively scheduled. KMC is open to all authorized patrons and sponsored guests. Park entrance fees apply. Call (808) 936-5831 or see rb.gy/jakyac.

KaiLoki's, at the old Mehe's location in Ocean View, offers live music and karaoke on a to-be-determined schedule, along with a locally-sourced menu and bar. See facebook.com/KaiLokis.

Free Lifetime Entry for Veterans and Gold Star Families to Hawaiʻi Volcanoes and other national parks. Details at rb.gy/k3evh6.

BUY LOCAL GIFTS ONLINE, IN-PERSON

Purchase The Volcano School of Arts & Sciences Fundraising calendars, t-shirts, and sweatshirts. review the calendar at rb.gy/tmxzva. Order the Calendar using this form: rb.gy/ytekoz. Send payment or donations to VSAS PayPal, paypal.com/paypalme/VolcanoSchool. VSAS is also selling school t-shirts and sweatshirts. Order from here: rb.gy/2a4cim. Send in order forms and payment to the main office: VSAS, PO Box 845, Volcano, HI 96785. For a printed copy of the order form to be mailed, contact Kaye at 985-9800, knagamine@volcanoschool.net. Contact Kanani at kwylie@volcanoschool.net for more information and assistance with ordering.

Volcano Art Center online, in person. Shop at Niʻaulani Campus in Volcano Village, Monday through Friday, 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. Gallery in Hawaiʻi Volcanoes National Park, open Wednesday through Sunday, 9 a.m. to 4 p.m. Virtual Shopping Appointments offered via Skype or FaceTime. Book at volcanoartcenter.org/shop for $5. Shop online gallery 24/7. Orders shipped or free local pickup available. See the VAC Virtual Classroom, which features over 90 videos. See volcanoartcenter.org/events, call 967-8222. 

Kaʻū Coffee Mill & Visitor Center. Buy online at kaucoffeemill.com and in person at 96-2694 Wood Valley Road, Tuesday through Thursday, 9 a.m. to 3 pm.

Punaluʻu Bake Shop online at bakeshophawaii.com and in-person 8:30 a.m. to 5 p.m., seven days a week.

Aliʻi  Hawaiian Hula Hands Coffee. Order by calling 928-0608 or emailing alihhhcoffee@yahoo.com.

Aikane Coffee Plantation. Order online at aikaneplantationcoffee.com. Call 808-927-2252

Miranda's Farms Coffee. Order online at mirandasfarms.com or, in person at 73-7136 Mamalahoa Hwy, Nāʻālehu.

Kuahiwi Ranch Store, in person. Shop weekdays, 10 a.m. to 5 p.m., Sunday, 11 am to 3 p.m. at 95-5520 Hwy 11. Locally processed grass fed beef, live meat chickens, and feed for cattle, goats, sheep, chickens, horses, dogs, and pigs. Call 929-7333 of 938-1625, email kaohi@kuahiwiranch.com. 

Kaʻū Art Gallery, in person in Nāʻālehu, Wednesdays and Saturdays from 9 a.m. to 3 p.m. The Gallery is in the process of showcasing everything in the gallery online at kauartgallery.com. If interested in purchasing, contact Kaʻu Art Gallery at kauartgallery@hawaiiantel.biz.

Stay Home, Cook Rice – A Pandemic Limited Edition cookbook by Hawaiian Electric employees and retirees, and their families and friends costs $14 and includes more than 160 recipes. Benefits Hawaiʻi Island's United Way chapter partners, which includes Boys & Girls Club Big Island. Find order form at hawaiianelectric.com/unitedwaycookbook, call 543-4601 on weekdays from 8 a.m to 3 p.m., or email karen.garcia@hawaiianelectric.com. Cookbooks can only be mailed within the U.S. at USPS Priority Mail rate. Delays may be due to the pandemic. 

CHURCH SERVICES

Attend Sunday Drive-In Worship Service at Waiʻōhinu's Kauahaʻao Congregational Church. Parking on the lawn begins at 10 a.m., with Worship Service starting at 10:10 a.m. Face coverings required when usher comes to vehicle to pass out worship bulletin and other materials, and at the same time, collect any offering or gifts the individual(s) would like to give, or when leaving vehicles for the restroom. Church provides paper fans to stay cool. Bring water. Catch the live-streamed service at 10:10 a.m. and Praise Jam, which runs from 9:15 a.m. to 9:45 a.m. Service is emailed Sunday afternoon to anyone on the email list. Sign up by emailing atdwongyuen.kauahaaochurch@gmail.com or call 928-8039 or 937-2155.

St. Jude's Episcopal Church services and worship are posted online at StJudesHawaii.org. Join the Aloha Hour via Zoom at 11 a.m. on Sundays, at rb.gy/3jfbzd, Meeting ID: 684 344 9828, Password: Aloha. Weekly hot meals, hot showers, the computer lab, and in-person services and bible studies are suspended. Check the webpage for Christmas services.

Hope DIA-mend Ministries holds outdoor services Sundays at 9:45 a.m. at 92-898 Ginger Blossom Lane in Ocean View. Masks and distancing required. For help and/or to donate, call or text Pam and Lance Ako at 808-937-6355, or call the Ministry at 808-920-8137. See them on Facebook and at hopedia-mendministries.com.

SIGN UP SOON

Register for 2021 Sanctuary Ocean Count. The annual count is held the last Saturday of three months: Jan. 30, Feb. 27, and March 27, from 8 a.m. to 12:15 p.m. The Ocean Count promotes public awareness about humpback whales, the sanctuary, and shore-based whale watching opportunities in the Hawaiian Islands. Contact Cindy Among-Serrao, cindy.among-serrao@noaa.gov. Register at oceancount.org.

Nominate Businesses that Provide Excellent COVID-19 Safety Precautions for a Gold Star. Submit nominations to County of Hawaiʻi Department of Research and Development at rb.gy/fsrkwg. Find help for small businesses at rb.gy/sxzjt0.

OUTDOOR MARKETS

Volcano Farmers Market, Cooper Center, Volcano Village on Sundays. 6 a.m. to 10 a.m., with much local produce, baked goods, food to go, island beef and Kaʻū Coffee. Cooper Center's EBT Machine, used at the Farmer's Market, is out of service until further notice. EBT is used for Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program, formerly Food Stamps. Call 808-967-7800.

Ocean View Community Market, open Saturdays and Wednesdays, 6:30 a.m. to 2 p.m., on the corner of Kona Drive and Highway 11, where Thai Grindz is located. Managed by Mark Council. Masks mandatory. 100-person limit, social distancing required. Gate unlocked for vendors at 5:30 a.m., $15 dollars, no reservations needed. Parking in upper lot only. Vendors must provide own sanitizer. Food vendor permits required. Carpooling encouraged.

ʻO Kaʻū Kākou Market, in Nāʻālehu, open Monday, Wednesday, and Saturday, 8 a.m. to noon. Limit of 50 customers, 25 vendor booths, with 30 feet of space between vendors. Masks and hand sanitizing required, social distancing enforced. Contact Sue Barnett, OKK Market Manager, at 808-345-9374 (voice or text) or kaufarmer@aol.com for more and to apply to vend. See facebook.com/OKauKakouMarket.

Ocean View Swap Meet open at Ocean View makai shopping center, near Mālama Market. Hours for patrons are 8 a.m. to 3 p.m. Saturday and Sunday. Vendor set-up time is 5 a.m. Masks required.

HELP FOR HEALTH & COVID TESTING

Kaʻū Hospital offers COVID testing referral from the ER, a physician or a Kaʻū Clinic health provider.

Free Drive-Thru COVID Testing, Saturdays at Kea‘au High School in Puna, 1 p.m. to 5 p.m., and Wednesdays at Konawaena High School from 2 p.m. to 6 p.m. and Civic Auditorium in Hilo from 3 p.m. to 6 p.m. (enter from Kuawa Street entrance). No co-pay, no insurance necessary, but bring insurance card if have. People do not have to have symptoms in order to be tested. Social distancing must be observed and face coverings must be worn at all times. For more, call Civil Defense at 935-0031.

Micronesian-Language COVID-19 Helpline is supported by We Are Oceania, weareoceania.org, to help with identifying COVID-19 symptoms, testing, quarantine, health insurance, housing, unemployment. Call (808) 913-1364. Watch the video at facebook.com/watch/?v=989579144844697.

Anyone Feeling Depressed or Anxious, or who needs someone to talk to, can call Department of Health's expanded Hawai‘i C.A.R.E.S. program at 1-800-753-6879 – the same number previously used by Crisis Line of Hawai‘i. Individuals in crisis can also text ALOHA to 741741, available 24/7.

Learn How to Practice Self-Care through Big Island Substance Abuse Council's Practice Self-Care Series. For additional series that feature refreshing wellness tips, follow the Behavioral Health & Homelessness Statewide Unified Response Group at facebook.com/bhhsurg.

Sign Up for Two Women's Health Programs from Kaʻū Women's Collective. Piko focuses on reproductive health; increasing access, respect, cultural competence, education, and choice. Pilina aims to grow membership and establish a culture of collaborative decision-making. Follow @kau_womens_health_collective. Contact rootsmedieshawaii@gmail.com. Call 808-450-0498.

Resources for LGBTQ+, Loved Ones, and Allies at Sexual and Gender Minority online resource hub at health.hawaii.gov/camhd/lgbtq-safe-spaces.

Talk Story on Nā Leo TV series aims to help deliver accurate and current information to Hawaiʻi Island residents. Airs live Thursdays at 10 a.m. on Spectrum Channel 53, streaming on Nā Leo's free mobile app, and on-demand at naleo.tv/covid19.

Health and Fitness Website for Kūpuna, 808b-fit.com, contains videos for kūpuna to play and move along with. There are videos for stretching, tai chi, yoga, dancing, dance fitness, bon dance, hula, chair dancing, and chair yoga.

Yoga with Emily Catey Weiss, Mondays, Wednesdays, and Fridays, 8 a.m. to 9 a.m. at Volcano Art Center Niʻaulani Campus in Volcano Village. Advanced registration required; $5 per class. volcanoartcenter.org/events, 967-8222.

Choose Aloha for Home is available to families, to provide a healthy way to grow together using neuroscience and positive psychology. Program uses a series of self-guided videos, activities, and "dinner table discussion topics." Sign up at chooselovemovement.org/choose-love-home.

FOOD RELIEF

Pick up food weekdays in the parking lot of ACE Hardware in Ocean View from Hope DIA-mend Ministries TLC at 4:45 p.m. About 300 meals available each day, coordinated by pastors Pam and Lance Ako. For help or to donate, call or text Ako at 808-937-6355, or call 808-920-8137. See them on Facebook and at hopedia-mendministries.com.

Bulk School Meal Service for those 18 and under will be held at Volcano and Pāhala on alternating weeks. Friday, Jan. 1, 10 a.m. to 1 p.m., pick up food in Volcano, Jan. 8 at Kaʻū District Gym. No service on Friday, Dec. 25. Food items include eggs, cereal, dry pasta, rice, beans, tortillas, milk, and canned vegetables and fruit. Each distribution provides enough food for every person 18 years and under to eat breakfast and lunch. No income requirements. Youth do not need to be present to receive bags but be prepared to give their names and birthdates. See volcanoschool.net or call 808-985-9901.

Emergency Boxes Available at Cooper Center Tuesday through Saturday 8 a.m. to 11:15 a.m. Call ahead, 967-7800. 

Vibrant Hawaiʻi Food Distribution in Pāhala takes local food packages to homes in Pāhala through Dec. 31.

Free food for keiki offered at Resilience Hub, Nāʻālehu Hongwanji on Monday, Wednesday, and Friday, noon to 4 p.m. The Hub also features drop-in WiFi and laptop access. Location is 95-5695 Hawaiʻi Belt Rd. Contact Michelle Galimba, 808-430-4927, for more.

EDUCATION

Virtual presentation, Sea Turtles in Hawaiʻi. Register to watch at rb.gy/rkd2fd

Free WiFi Access for Students is available in Pāhala, Nāʻālehu, and Ocean View through Kaʻū High & Pāhala Elementary.  Questions? See khpes.org or call 313-4100.

Resilience Hub at Nāʻālehu Hongwanji, Monday-Wednesday-Friday, noon to 4 p.m. Drop-in wifi and laptop access, free meals for participating keiki. Follows all county, state, and federal COVID-19 guidelines. Contact Michelle Galimba, 808-430-4927. Register for Boys & Girls Club Mobile Outreach and Tutoring Programs at rb.gy/o1o2hy. For keiki grades 1-6. Contact Boys & Girls Club of the Big Island Administrative Office, Monday through Friday, 9 a.m. to 5 p.m., at (808) 961-5536 or email mobiletutoring@bgcbi.org or info@bgcbi.org.

ʻOhana Help Desk offers online How-To Guides for Chromebooks and iPads at rb.gy/8er9wm. ʻOhana Help Desk also available by phone, weekdays, 7 a.m. to 8 p.m., Sundays from 4 p.m. to 8 p.m.

Invite Park Rangers to Virtually Visit Classes, through connecting with teachers and home-schoolers with distance learning programs and virtual huakaʻi (field trips). Contact havo_education@nps.gov.

Weekly Virtual Town Meetings, hosted by Kaʻū High & Pāhala Elementary, Wednesdays at 5:30 p.m. Discussion topics include attendance, best practices, Grab-n-Go meals, school updates, questions and feedback, and more. Go to KHPES.org for Live WebEx link.

Pāhala and Nāʻālehu Public Libraries, open for WiFi, pick-up, and other services. Nāʻālehu open Monday and Wednesday, 9 a.m. to 4 p.m., Friday, 11 a.m. to 4 p.m. Pāhala open Tuesday, noon to 7 p.m., Thursday, 9 a.m. to 4 p.m., limited entry into library with Wiki Visits. Schedule a Library Take Out time at picktime.com/hspls. Open for library card account help and reference assistance from the front door. WiFi available to anyone with a library card, from each library parking lot. See librarieshawaii.org.

Free Book Exchanges, at laundromats in Ocean View and Nāʻālehu, provided by Friends of the Kaʻū Libraries. Open to all. Keep the books, pass them on to other readers, or return them. Selection of books replenished weekly at both sites.

Read Report on Public Input about Disaster Recovery from damage during the 2018 Kīlauea eruption. View the Civic Engagement and Comment Analysis Report at rb.gy/awu65k

Watch Hawaiʻi's 28th Annual Filipino Fiesta and 8th Flores de Mayo virtual celebration at rb.gy/b53jgn.

Learn About Hawaiʻi's History & Culture through Papakilo Database, papakilodatabase.com.

Virtual Workshops on Hawaiʻi's Legislative Processes through Public Access Room. Sign up by contacting (808) 587-0478 or par@capitol.hawaii.gov. Ask questions and discuss all things legislative in a non-partisan environment. Attend Coffee Hour with PAR: Fridays at 3 p.m. on Zoom, meeting ID 990 4865 9652 or click zoom.us/j/99048659652. PAR staff will be available to answer questions and to discuss the legislative process. Anyone wanting to listen in without taking part in discussions is welcome. Learn more at lrb.hawaii.gov/public-access-room.

ECONOMIC RELIEF

Online Directory at shopbigisland.com, co-sponsored by County of Hawai‘i, has a signup sheet for local businesses to fill in the blanks. The only requirement is a physical address on this island.

Apply for The Volcano School of Arts & Sciences COVID-19 Family Relief Funds. Funded by Volcano Community Association, and members of the VSAS Friends and Governing Boards, who have donated, the fund supplies KTA or Dimple Cheek Gift Cards, or gift cards to other locally owned business, to VSAS families in need. Contact Kim Miller at 985-8537, kmiller@volcanoschool.net. Contributions to the fund can be sent in by check to: VSAS, PO Box 845, Volcano, HI 96785 – write Relief Fund in the memo. See volcanoschool.net.

Marketing Assistance, for small businesses affected by COVID-19, from University of Hawaiʻi-Hilo faculty and the senior class at bit.ly/2YvFxsl

Homeowners, apply for Affordable Rental Housing Tax Reduction through Dec. 31. Application, requirements and benefits are at hawaiipropertytax.com/misc.html or call the county Real Property Tax office at 961-8201 or 323-4880.

Apply for Utility Assistance to pay for electricity, non-government water, or gas. Applicants must be a Hawaiʻi Island resident, at least 18 years old, lost income or work hours due to COVID-19, and not previously received assistance from other COVID-19 federal or state-funded programs. Funded by CARES Act and distributed by Hawaiʻi County Economic Opportunity Council, required documents for application are government-issued identification, income verification documents for all household members, utility statement with address of services, lease/rental agreement or mortgage document, and proof of hardship. Hardship may include, but not limited to, pay stubs documenting pre-COVID-19 income, unemployment approval letter, or layoff letter. Apply at HCEOC.net or call 808-961-2681.

Apply for Expanded Hawaiʻi County Rent and Mortgage Assistance Program. Contact RMAP partners: Hawaiian Community Assets/Hawaiʻi Community Lending, HawaiianCommunity.net, 808-934-0801; HOPE Services Hawaiʻi, hopeserviceshawaii.org/rmap, 808-935- 3050; Hawai‘i First Federal Credit Union, hawaiifirstfcu.com/pathways, 808-933- 6600; Neighborhood Place of Puna, neighborhoodplaceofpuna.org/coronavirus-rent-mortgage-relief, 808-965-5550; Hawai‘i Island Home for Recovery, hihrecovery.org/RMAP, 808-640-4443 or 808- 934-7852; Habitat for Humanity Hawai‘i Island, habitathawaiiisland.org/rmap.html, 808-450-2118.

Apply for Holomua Hawaiʻi Relief Grants for small businesses and nonprofits, up to $10,000, support core operations, safe on-going and reopening costs, personal protective equipment, and training and technical assistance. The business or nonprofit must employ 50 people or fewer. See rb.gy/v2x2vy

Receive Help Over the Phone with Critical Financial Issues, through Cities for Financial Empowerment Fund Financial Navigators from County of Hawaiʻi, in partnership with Hawaiʻi First Federal Credit Union. Complete webform at hawaiifirstfcu.com/community-resource-center or call 808-933-6600. Contact Sharon Hirota at 808-961-8019 with questions.

Apply or Donate to Full Calabash Fund to support vulnerable Hawaiʻi families and food producers impacted by the pandemic through Dec. 31 by contacting Nicole Milne, The Kohala Center's vice president of food and agriculture initiatives, at (808) 987-9210 or nmilne@kohalacenter.org. 

AGRICULTURE

Contact AskUSDA at (833) ONE-USDA with representatives available 4 a.m. to 12:30 p.m. weekdays. The website, ask.usda.gov is available 24/7 and includes live chat agents available 5 a.m. to 1 p.m. on weekdays. Inquiries can also be sent via email at any time to askusda@usda.gov.

Women Farmers can Register with Hawaiʻi Women Farmers Directory, a statewide online directory of women-operated farms, ranches, and agribusinesses. Visit the program website to register, rb.gy/87fn9d.

Coffee Growers are urged to take a survey on how the pandemic is affecting them by Hawaiʻi Coffee Association. Take the survey here: surveymonkey.com/r/638VWS6.

Program to Sell Produce and Meats on Hawaiʻi Island from commercial farmers and livestock producers on Hawai‘i Island for distribution to families in need. Learn more at rb.gy/exzuk1

Native Hawaiian Farmers and Ranchers urged to use U.S. Dept. of Ag On-Farm Market Directory. Visit the program website, ams.usda.gov/local-food-directories/onfarm.

Read About Seed Biodiversity for Hawaiʻi's Local Food System in It all Begin and Ends with Seed, where Education by Outreach Coordinator Nancy Redfeather shares her insights. Read the blog at rb.gy/ijai3y.

Find Grants and Loans Offered to Farmers and Ranchers, at oahuaca.org. The website has a new search feature. Find Rangeland Management Resources at globalrangelands.org/state/hawaii.

Learn Basics of Organic Farming, via free modules at rb.gy/4wio2y.

PETS & WILDLIFE

One-Time Emergency Food For Pets is available through KARES. Call David or Barbara Breskin at 319-8333.

Report Humpback Whales in Trouble at NOAA Fisheries 24 hour hotline, 1-888- 256-984. Also report distressed sea turtles, monk seals and dolphins.

Apply for Hawaiian Islands Humpback Whale National Marine Sanctuary Advisory Council Members by Thursday, Jan. 14. Contact Cindy Among-Serrao via email at Cindy.Among-Serrao@noaa.gov or visit the sanctuary website, hawaiihumpbackwhale.noaa.gov.

For free Veterinary Care, Spay & Neuter, visit hihs.org, Services Tab, Spay and Neuter or Community Vet Care, or email petsupport@hihs.org. Call 808-217- 0154. All appointments must be scheduled in advance and are open to healthy dogs and cats. Two pets per family will be accommodated, each pet with own appointment. Unavailable to animals other than dogs and cats. Unavailable to strays and those with contagious illnesses.

COMMUNITY

Volunteer in the community – find out how at hawaiicommunityfoundation.org/participate.

Wai‘ōhinu Transfer Station is open Mondays, Thursdays, and Saturdays, 6 a.m. to 6 p.m. Recycling services available 8 a.m. to 4 p.m. HI-5 deposit beverage container collection Saturdays only, 8 a.m. to 3:30 p.m. "White goods" appliance collection services will accept one appliance per resident per day. Customers need to check in with the facility attendant before dropping an appliance off at the facility. No unattended drop-offs allowed. Visit hawaiizerowaste.org or call 961-8270. 

Ocean View Transfer Station is open Mondays, Thursdays, and Saturdays, 8 a.m. to 4 p.m. HI-5 deposit beverage container collection will continue as usual on Saturdays only, 8 a.m. to 3 p.m. Visit hawaiizerowaste.org or call 961-8270. 

Sign Up for Solid Waste Operations Alerts at rb.gy/iemgrc for site closures, service hours, and more.

   

 





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