A Luau for Luana
On Sunday, September 19th, Mythical Magical Maui was held at the Wailea Marriott Resort & Spa, our 22nd annual luau fundraiser. The program include four fantastic performances by ‘Ulalena; guest speakers including our CEO, former and current Hale Makua residents, and a member of Hale Makua Health Services’ staff; and honored Walter Hester, CEO of Maui Jim Sunglasses. All proceeds from this event will benefit Luana, our efforts to create culture change at Hale Makua Health Services.
|‘Ulalena performs “Kumulipo”|
This was such a great event that wouldn’t have been possible without the help of so many people, particularly the cast and crew of ‘Ulalena, who donated their time and talents for this year’s luau. ‘Ulalena performed four vignettes: Kumulipo, Makahiki, Hina, and ‘Ulalena, which included amazing vocals by Lia Krieg, hula numbers, instrumentals, and aerial acrobatics. If you’re on Maui, their show is a definite must see!
|‘Ulalena’s performance “Hina”|
Guest speakers included former resident, Joe Thomas, and current resident, Nancy Kawamura. Nancy spoke about her life at Hale Makua, all of the activities she looks forward to and the quality of care that she receives – all she has to do is push a button and someone will come to her room to assist her. Joe shared the moving story about how after over a year at Hale Makua, he was able to leave the community to live independently at Hale Mahaolu. Such an inspiring story. When Joe first moved into Hale Makua he wasn’t able to speak or stand due to a stroke.
|Guest speakers included a former & current resident|
The most passionate guest speaker was Activities Director, Teresa Lopes, who spoke about why she has worked at Hale Makua Health Services for over thirty years. Her speech started with why people worked at the same place for long periods of time, the first being pay and the second pension. Working for a non-profit organization, she stated that neither of these were the reasons why she stayed, but the fifth reason, the people, this was why she’s been with the organization for over three decades. Teresa shared a heartfelt story about one of the many residents who have inspired her over the years. This resident, like so many, thought that when he came to Hale Makua he was going to pass away soon, that Hale Makua literally was the place people go before they die. This same resident that cried every day for weeks when he first moved to Hale Makua began doing things that he had never done before, like swimming and bowling, he told Teresa that moving to Hale Makua was like just starting another chapter of his life.
|Emcee Mitch Mitchell introduces Teresa Lopes|
This year’s luau honoree was Walter Hester, CEO of Maui Jim Sunglasses. Walter was recognized for his generous contributions and support over the years, from becoming this luau’s first principle sponsor and remaining the principle sponsor for eight years, to serving on our Board of Directors. We are so thankful and grateful for his efforts in helping us as we strive to stimulate our residents with hope, sense of family, and inclusion.
|Honored guest Walter Hester, CEO of Maui Jim Sunglasses|