East Hawaii News

HLTA Charity Walk Raises Over $2.2M

May 18, 2015, 9:43 AM HST
* Updated May 19, 8:12 AM
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A total of 1,200 Big Island walkers participated in the 37th annual Hawai’i Lodging & Tourism Association’s Visitor Industry Charity Walk, helping to raise $2.2 million.

The walk on the Big Island was one of six that occurred throughout the state with a combined total of 11,277 participants.

“Through the collective efforts of the people and friends of Hawai’i’s visitor industry, more than 200 charities statewide will benefit tremendously from funds raised at recent HLTA benefit events,” said Ben Rafter, the 2015 Charity Walk chairperson. “We are very proud of the deep aloha spirit shown in supporting our local community.”

In addition to the walks on the Big Island, Maui, Lanai, Molokai, Oahu, and Kauai, a benefit concert was held. “Hawai’i for Hawai’i” took place on May 9 and alone raised $400,000.

Maui raised the most amount, per island, with a record breaking $800,000. Meanwhile, Oahu raised $440,000, the Big Island raised $300,000, Kauai raised $230,000, Lanai raised $23,483, and Molokai raised $15,356.

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“We are so thankful for the generous kokua of the participants, volunteers and organizations that helped rally for this year’s walk,” said George Szigeti, president of HLTA. “As one of the largest fundraisers in the state, the tourism community takes great pride in putting together a fun and successful Charity Walk, so we’re pleased that hundreds of charities will get the support that they need to serve people across the state.”

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The Charity Walk first began in 1978. Over $28 million has been raised since for charities throughout Hawai’i.

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