Aloha United Way Presents Spirit of Community Awards

Photo: Courtesy of Aloha United Way.

Dalgona cafe, the rise of TikTok, walk down the center of Kalākaua Avenue and swim on a deserted beach. Repeat patiently to colleagues: “You are on mute”. DIY haircuts (or longer styles if you were smart and didn’t trust yourself with scissors).

Memories of 2020 are already starting to blur around the edges. We baked bread. We were hoping for a vaccine. We have lost jobs and sometimes loved ones. Calls to Aloha United Way The statewide 211 hotline grew more than 300% as locals rushed for help.

As of July 2

Photo: Courtesy of Aloha United Way.

It wasn’t all hot bread and gardening. As a community, we faced unprecedented challenges ranging from housing and food to education and nearly 50% unemployment. 2021 has brought us vaccines and boosters, rising inflation and continued supply chain shortages. The COVID-19 pandemic has proven to be more permanent than expected. The number of ALICE (Asset Limited, Income Constrained, Employed) households was increasing in Hawaii.

Aloha United Way has worked with over 1,400 businesses to raise funds to help them. From essential employees to everyone working from home, employees of our workplace campaign partners have joined the fray. These innovative workplace campaign coordinators have organized everything from virtual golf tournaments (who knew?) to virtual hula lessons and online bake sales. Leaders of organizations large and small have inspired their staff to give personally matching gifts. Teachers, unions, real estate companies and even restaurants have joined the fight for our community.

auw july

Photo: Courtesy of Aloha United Way.

Because we are unable to honor our Workplace Champions in person, AUW has created a Community Spirit Awards Directory for the “Class of Giving 2020-21”. We are extremely grateful to our fundraising champions who have worked so hard for our community. The yearbook will be released in late August both virtually and in print to commemorate and celebrate the fundraising efforts of so many across the state.

If you would like to organize a workplace giving campaign, learn more about the process, or view the Spirit of Community Awards Directory, please visit our campaign resources or contact us at [email protected].

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