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Strengthening Hawai‘i’s Communities
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Puna Strong

Puna Strong has a community-based disaster management approach that values the knowledge and capacities of residents; builds on local resources, including social capital; and aims to increase community resilience. Community resilience is the ability for the community to efficiently use available resources to respond to, withstand, and recover from adverse situations such as the Kīlauea eruption of 2018.

In January 2021, The County of Hawai‘i and Hawai‘i Community Foundation launched Puna Strong to assist with disaster readiness and community resilience, both strategies identified in the Kīlauea Recovery and Resilience Plan (KRRP), following the 2018 Kīlauea eruption. It is supported by the County’s recovery funds and HCF’s Hawai‘i Island Strong Fund. A third round of grants will be awarded in 2023 to further support organizations working to strengthen long-term resilience of the Puna community and deepen networks and partnerships aligned with the goals of the KRRP.

In addition to providing grants, the County and HCF will work with intermediaries in the community to assist with technical support, peer learning and network building among recipients.

For eligible organizations that did not receive grant funding through Puna Strong in 2022, the first step in applying for the grant process is to submit a letter of interest to Chelsey Chow of the Hawai‘i Community Foundation at cchow@hcf-hawaii.org by October 16th, 2023. Details on how to submit a letter of interest can be found here.

Please contact Chelsey Chow at cchow@hcf-hawaii.org with any questions.