Laupahoehoe CPCS – Hawai‘i island – Radio Bay: April, 2016

Laupahoehoe CPCS is an elementary through high school charter school. Formerly a Hawai‘i DOE school (est. 1901) that was converted to charter status in 2012. The Mālama Āina Foundation has an established program at the school. The “Mahope” program focuses upon delivering STEM based lessons and hands-on activities within a Hawaiian cultural context. The Education Coordinator implementing the program is Mr. Aaron Mickelson. Aaron teaches an after-school (Mahope) four day program and a day-class within the school’s schedule.

Aaron noted that a storeroom at the school contained several thousand outdated and unused textbooks. After making an inquiry, he learned that the books were scheduled to be disposed of. Through his contacts at the Peace Crop, Aaron was able to partner with a non-profit organization that sends text books to third world countries in need. A suitable site(s) and country (Samar-Leyte area, Philippines) were selected for the donation. Note: the Samar-Leyte area of the Philippines experienced the largest super typhoon ever recorded three years prior.

With the assistance of Mr. Scott Smith (Curriculum Coordinator) at Laupāhoehoe CPCS, the pair set off on the task of inventorying the books. Unbeknownst to both, through an error, community members disposed of the books. Shortly later, the error was identified and Aaron, the school custodian, and the same community members began the task of removing (five truck loads) the books from dumpsters. Upon retrieval, with student assistance, the books were processed, organized, packaged, and are currently awaiting pickup.

Trevor Lee