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Watch: Men of Pa‘a Pay Respect to Kupuna During Day of Service

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Members of a Puna nonprofit organization Men of Pa‘a visited Kailua-Kona this weekend to introduce their mission to the western side of the island as well as to restore the traditional and cultural practice of building cohesion with and showing respect to kupuna.

The group cooked an imu lunch, talked story and massaged the hands and feet of the elders who attended Saturday’s gathering at the West Hawai‘i Community Health Center in Kealakehe.

Ipoa Manakea, event organizer, said the gathering was important for several reasons, chief among them that the wisdom and knowledge that the kupuna hold can be shared and passed down to the younger generation.

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“There’s a connection between ‘aina to ‘aina, between kupuna to keiki .. just having continuity and knowing, we’re going to be all right if we continue to practice our kupuna īke, our kupuna ways,” he said.

Togetherness is the best form of learning, he added, especially for the members of Men of Pa‘a, who are integrating back into their communities from the judicial system and learn through service the value to themselves and those around them of living pono.

To contact Maunakea about his program, or to help, call 808-960-3893.

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Tom Hasslinger
Tom Hasslinger is a journalist who lives in Kailua-Kona. Prior to joining Big Island Now, he worked as the managing editor for West Hawaii Today and deputy editor for The Garden Island newspaper on Kauai. He's worked for over 15 years as a reporter for the Oahu-based Civil Beat news outlet, as well as in Coeur d'Alene, Idaho and Douglas Wyoming.
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