Rep. Tulsi Gabbard Message for Kupu's 10 Year Anniversary

October 10, 2017
Press Release

Below is a transcript of Rep. Tulsi Gabbard's message for Kupu's 10th Anniversary:

In Hawai‘i, protecting our environment is more than just a policy discussion; it is a way of life, embedded in the fabric of our culture and society. Our culture of aloha is centered around love, respect, and compassion for all living things, and is rooted in a deep respect for Mother Nature and the life-giving gifts she provides. Our state motto - Ua Mau ke Ea o ka ʻĀina i ka Pono – reminds us that to preserve and protect the ʻāina, we each have a responsibility to conserve our precious, limited natural resources and promote sustainable practices. For ten years, Kupu has been dedicated to honoring this responsibility by carrying out its important mission.

Founded in 2007, Kupu was developed in response to the growing needs of Hawaii’s communities to train up the next generation in natural resource management, renewable energy, energy conservation, and other green job skill sets. Kupu is predicated on the Hawaiian concept of maka hana ka`ike – in working one learns – and the organization is centered around utilizing the lessons passed down by generations in Hawaiʻi to build a better tomorrow—replenishing what we take, putting need over greed, and giving back to our home.

To carry out this mission, Kupu provides hands-on training programs that educate and mentor our keiki and youth, and help to build stronger communities for all of us. In its decade of service to Hawaiʻi, Kupu has trained more than 3,000 youth in the areas of conservation, sustainability, and environmental education, along with providing hundreds of paid internships, engaging more than 17,000 volunteers in over 230,000 service hours, dedicating nearly half a million dollars in college and continued education funds to Hawaii’s youth, and more. In addition to its direct impact in improving our 'āina and bettering our people and planet, Kupu’s work has created ripples throughout our communities, and helped to increase employment opportunities throughout Hawaiʻi, promote higher education for at-risk youth, build stronger families, and invest in the next generation.     

The lessons gifted to us by our ancestors throughout history are just as timely and relevant now as ever before, and they must frame our path in the future. Mahalo nui loa to the entire Kupu leadership team, Board of Directors, Ho‘āhu Campaign members, staff, volunteers, community partners, and many more who have helped guide Kupu to achieve this ten-year milestone. Best wishes for your continued success in all that you do!  

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