Business

Big Island Business Man Strives to Raise $20,000 for The Food Basket

July 21, 2017, 1:01 PM HST
* Updated July 21, 1:05 PM
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A Big Island businessman is reaching out to the community to help feed the island’s keiki and kūpuna in need.

The Food Basket–Hawaii Island’s Food Bank serves one in every three Big Island residents through its partner agencies, providing nutritious and high-quality food to families, children and seniors who might otherwise go hungry.

And while many residents generously reach into their cupboards to donate spam, Vienna sausage, rice and saimin, it’s the monetary donations that help sustain the islandwide operation, allowing The Food Basket to continue collecting, storing and distributing food all over the island.

So when Randy Kurohara, president and owner of Aloha Grown, Creative Arts Hawaii and Parker Ranch Store, heard that The Food Basket needed additional funding to sustain its critical programs, he decided to utilize his in-house designing, printing and retail outlets to create the limited edition Aloha Grown Mālama Tee with 100% of all monies collected going to The Food Basket.

when Randy Kurohara, president and owner of Aloha Grown, Creative Arts Hawaii and Parker Ranch Store, heard that The Food Basket needed additional funding to sustain its critical programs, he decided to utilize his in-house designing, printing and retail outlets to create the limited edition Aloha Grown Mālama Tee with 100% of all monies collected going to The Food Basket. Courtesy photo.

“The Food Basket has done so much to support the most vulnerable in our community—our kūpuna and keiki—now it’s our turn,” said Kurohara. “In just a few short weeks, we already reached 20% of our goal. Please purchase your Aloha Grown Mālama Tee and help us raise $20,000 for The Food Basket!”

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The shirts are $20 each; 100% will be donated to The Food Basket.

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Every Mālama Tee sold will allow The Food Basket to help feed seven children breakfast for a week, one senior lunch for over a month, or an entire family dinner for a week.

“We are greatly appreciative of local businesses like Aloha Grown, Creative Arts Hawaii and Parker Ranch Store for helping us raise funds in our time of need,” said The Food Basket Executive Director En Young.  “We remind everyone that all donations made to The Food Basket stay right here on Hawai‘i Island and assist the kūpuna and keiki in our local communities.”

“We so appreciate the food that you contribute to the Na‘alehu seniors,” Kristine M., a recipient of The Food Basket services, wrote in a letter. “We need this help with food so very much. Last year our only grocery store here closed… since most of us live on Social Security fixed income, this is so important to get these vegetables and canned goods. You have no idea how much this helps us out!”

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The Mālama Tee was designed with green fern leaves to represent the Earth, while blue waves represent water—both of which are crucial and necessary food sources.

“Mālama” was selected as the shirt theme because the word means “to care for, preserve, protect,” and we must mālama our island resources in order to provide food for our communities.

Aloha Grown Mālama Tees are $20 each and available for purchase in-store at Aloha Grown (224 Kamehameha Ave. in  Hilo), Creative Arts Hawaii (500 Kalanianaole Ave. in Hilo), Parker Ranch Store (Parker Ranch Center in Waimea), The Food Basket (40 Holomua St. in Hilo).

T-shirts can also be purchased online.

For more information on the Aloha Grown Mālama Tee Fundraiser, visit www.parkerranchstore.com/malama.

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