For over a decade, HWMO has been tasked with the mission of protecting Hawaii's communities and natural resources from the growing threat of wildfire and its impacts throughout the state. We've made immense strides over the past few years towards reaching our goals even as a small non-profit organization with no more than 5 staff members at any given time. We've been fortunate enough to secure grant funds for our projects, however, our operations and outreach capabilities rely on your continual support.
To help keep our engine running, we held a fundraiser and outreach event at Denny's Restaurant in Kona on Sunday, April 19th. We teamed with Rotary Club of Kona and Denny's to host Project Compassion, a program that holds monthly events that raise awareness for many Hawaii-based non-profits and thousands of dollars to support their programs.
Our event attracted local residents and visitors who were drawn-in by Hawaii Fire Department fire engine tours and a Goat Dozer Petting Zoo outside of the restaurant. Throughout the evening, people filtered through the doorways of Denny's to dine. Each person who dined contributed to our fundraiser. We collected 20% of the dinner profits and 100% of the tips that night, all going towards our wildfire safety efforts. The catch? We had to earn our money. HWMO staff and Board members donned aprons and put on a smile to help host and serve customers, talking wildfire prevention whenever possible. Customers were also treated to hours of live music entertainment put on by a local HFD firefighter and our very own, Tom Loomis (harmonica virtuoso.)
Before customers entered or left the restaurant, they had the opportunity to stop by our informational booth where we passed out Ready, Set, Go! programs and gave out Kaleo the Pueo hats and T-shirts to generous donors. We even held a silent auction that featured some great items: Red Water Café dinner certificate for two, KTA certificates, Leche de Tigre merchandise and concert tickets, Snorkel Bob's merchandise, and beautiful coral reef artwork from Waikoloa native Rick Turnbow.
In total, we made $2,500 in donations thanks to generous customers, silent auction bidders, and our incredible sponsors: Adventure X Boat Tours, Laughing Stock Farms, Red Water Café, and Snorkel Bob's. Thanks also to our silent auction contributors: Red Water Café, KTA, Snorkel Bob's, Leche De Tigre, and Rick Turnbow.
A big mahalo also goes out to Hawaii Fire Department, Big Island Goat Dozers, Rotary Club of Kona, Project Compassion's Holly DeGeal, Denny's Restaurant and our hard-working staff and Board members who helped make the night a success!
If you missed out on the event, but would still like to contribute, please visit: