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Supporting the Working Families Who Support Hawaii


When schools closed their doors because of COVID-19, the YMCA knew that working families weren’t just losing lessons, but also reliable, trusted childcare, and often, important nutrition in the form of school meals.

A grant from the Hawaii Resilience Fund now sustains the YMCA Feeds Kids Program, where, for the duration of the coronavirus crisis, anyone 18 and under will be able to pick up a healthy “Grab & Go” meal at lunchtime. In its first two weeks, the YMCA distributed 7,274 meals from seven locations across Oahu.

The grant also ensures that every family in need can enroll in the YMCA Essential Workers Child Care Program. Five days a week, from 6:30 am to 7:30 pm, students in grades K – 5 whose parents or guardians are essential workers have access to caring homework help, science, arts, games, indoor and outdoor activities, meals, and more, conducted according to CDC safety guidelines for COVID-19.

“I am a single mom, and having child care I can trust and financial assistance so I could afford it, was such a blessing,” says Chantelle, a health care provider and mom to a six year old. “There are very few people whom I entrust the care of my son. While I could have shuttled him between friends, there was the issue of increased and uncontrolled exposure and also not having a structured program…. I can continue to serve my community, knowing that my son is safe and happy.”


Photos provided by: YMCA of Honolulu