“The longer this takes, the longer it takes our resources to come back” -Greg Lind, Kīpahulu ʻOhana
April 12-14, 2022 • In the precious hours leading up to a long-anticipated site visit with Dept of Aquatic Resources, the Kīpahulu ʻohana received a small group of visitors as lawaiʻa from Hāʻena (Kaua’i), Miloliʻi (Hawai’i), and Moʻomomi (Molokai) reunited in Kīpahulu (Maui) alo he alo. To this day few communities in Hawaii have experienced going through the Community Based Subsistence Fishing Area (CBSFA) rule-making and designation process. Those who have, regardless of whether they achieved this designation, know the road is a lonely arduous one that spans years, even decades, spent collecting data, organizing meetings, compromising and revising their rules package to protect natural resources and traditional and customary practices for subsistence and culture. All the while observing activities in their community that causes their beloved resources to decline before their eyes.
For many of us, since the beginning of the pandemic, this exchange was the first time venturing out of our moku. As a caravan of almost 70 that included interested community members from across East Maui, DLNR-DAR officials and policymakers, we moved through multiple locations across Kīpahulu and ended up at Kapahu Farm to dialogue about the CBSFA process. It was here we heard the Kīpahulu ʻOhana’s vision and foundations for their rules.
Some folks in our small group reunited with landscapes and family they haven’t seen in years. Uncle Blue Kinney of Hāʻena was like a kid again checking out the changes in the landscape and sharing stories of growing up in Hāna. To be able to come together like this, spending time talking story, learning from and encouraging each other was a much-needed moment for all. We want to extend aloha and support to the Kīpahulu ʻOhana for sharing this time with us, your wahi pana, your intentions, and your pathways toward abundance.