HCAP WEEKLY January 18, 2021

Single Mom Struggling to Weather the Pandemic Completes CNA and Finds Employment as Nursing Assistant
HCAP Receives Recognition for Participation in the Puuwai Momi Food and Toy Distribution
HCAP’s Leeward District Service Center Helps Client Enroll in Commercial Driver’s License Classes at Leeward Community College
HCAP Head Start Keiki Kick-Off the New Year with Fun Learning Activities

Single Mom Struggling to Weather the Pandemic Completes CNA and Finds Employment as Nursing Assistant

Kellie is a single mom struggling to take care of her two young children.  Prior to the pandemic, she lived an average life and worked for many years as a mail carrier.  She was financially stable, lived close to her elderly parents, and childcare was not a problem.  Like many Hawaiʻi families, Kellie’s life and that of her children changed drastically when COVID-19 hit.  Due to the school closures, Kellie’s children were forced to stay home, and because of social distancing and quarantine policies, affordable childcare options became scarce.  Kellie decided to take a leave of absence from work, which took an immense toll on her income.  She was also forced to move in order to afford rent, which also meant she had to move farther away from her parents and anyone else that she could depend on for childcare.  Once the duration of her leave ran out, she was left with no other options and Kellie returned to work.  However, the situation at home with her children and conflicting work schedule had not changed, and childcare was even more scarce than before.  She found herself having to leave her job as a mail carrier to take care of her children.

Despite the challenging situations she faced, Kellie kept persevering and was able to find resources that would help with her and her children’s situation.  However, she was having trouble finding employment and was struggling financially.  She decided to go back to school to obtain her Certified Nurse’s Aide (CNA) certification.  This is when she learned about HCAP’s various programs.  Several students from Windward Community College’s CNA program, who had already benefited from vocational training and tuition assistance through HCAP’s Nā Lima Hana Employment Core Services (ECS) Program,  informed Kellie about what HCAP could do for her.  Kellie quickly reached out to HCAP’s Windward District Service Center.  Kellie was immediately enrolled in HCAP’s ECS Program, completed the job readiness training, and was assisted with updating her resume. 

Not long after enrolling with HCAP’s ECS program, Kellie obtained employment with Aloha Nursing Rehab Centre as a nursing assistant, and received her Certificate of Completion as a CNA.  She was able to receive her first set of incentive gift cards, which is provided by HCAP’s Nā Lima Hana ECS program, and is in the process of getting her initial employment attire.  This is just a stepping stone for Kellie, as she starts to rebuild a new life for her and her children.  They all have had to make a lot of adjustments over this past year, but with the support of her peers, HCAP’s staff and services, and Kellie’s hard work and determination things are definitely looking bright for this family! 

If you are struggling to find employment, email NaLimaHana@hcapweb.org or visit www.hcapweb.org/na-lima-hana-employment-core-services-program/

HCAP Receives Recognition for Participation in the Puuwai Momi Food and Toy Distribution

Katy Perry, HCAP’s Central District Service Center Community Service Manager, recently participated in a drive-by certificate presentation in recognition of all the hard work and contributions HCAP provided to the Puuwai Momi Food and Toy Distribution held on December 11, 2020.

The Puuwai Momi Food and Toy Distribution was a collaboration between Senator Bennette Misalucha, Benjamin Parker of Hawaii Public Housing Authority, Shanty Asher of the City & County Honolulu Office of Economic Revitalization, Marshallese Community Organization of Hawaii, Aiea Elementary School, Aiea High School PTSO, Aloha Harvest, Consulate Office of the Federated States of Micronesia, Consulate Office of the Republic of the Marshall Islands, Church of Jesus Christ of Latter Day Saints, HomeStreet Bank, Mana Loa-Nimitzs Lions Club (Aiea), Mocha’s General Store Naomi Ungacta, Rotary Club of Hickam Pearl Harbor, Rotary Club of Pearl Ridge, We are Oceania, Representative Sonny Ganaden, Representative Sam Kong, Council Member-elect Radiant Cordero, Pacific Island community leaders, Parents And Children Together (PACT) and the Honolulu Community Action Program, Inc. 

In preparation for the distribution, volunteers went door to door giving out translated registration forms and flyers to residents. Meanwhile, staff at HCAP’s Central District Service Center helped by spreading the word to Puuwai Momi clients, taking calls from interested residents, and accepting registrations forms.  Great efforts were made to reach out to vulnerable community members, especially the Pacific Island populations.

During the distribution, HCAP parking lot was used for the registration process with strict COVID-19 protocols in place and a group of language interpreters. Together, nearly 100 households were registered to receive bags of food and toys for their children. This project was a huge success and could not have been done without each and every partnering organization and community leaders that took part in aiding to the success of the event.  Central District Service Center would like to send a BIG MAHALO to HCAP’s Interim Director of Community Services, Robin Fakaosi, and Executive Assistant, James Upega, for helping HCAP take part in this awesome project that helped so many Puuwai Momi families have a brighter holiday season!

HCAP’s Leeward District Service Center Helps Client Enroll in Commercial Driver’s License Classes at Leeward Community College

Through their partnership with Alternative Structures International (ASI) Ohana Ola `O Kahumana, HCAP’s Leeward District Service Center received a referral for a client who was in need of employment services. After being referred to our staff, Bertram was enrolled in HCAP’s Nā Lima Hana Employment Core Services (ECS) Program and began his job readiness training. During his client intake, Bertram shared with our staff  that he was interested in employment that requires a Commercial Driver’s License (CDL) license. Leeward District’s Community Worker, Michelle quickly connected Bertram with Leeward Community College (LCC) and helped him with the process of registering for CDL classes. Bertram was able to complete his drug testing, driver’s history record, and finally his medical examiners certificate, which he paid for with the financial support from the ECS Program. Currently, Bertram continues to study to take his CDL Class A permit. Once he successfully receives his permit, he will be ready to begin taking CDL classes at Leeward Community College!

Our Leeward District Service Center is very excited for Bertram and his new journey towards obtaining his Commercial Driver’s License. To learn more about HCAP’s employment services, visit: www.hcapweb.org/na-lima-hana-employment-core-services-program/

HCAP Head Start Keiki Kick-Off the New Year with Fun Learning Activities

It’s a New Year and our HCAP Head Start keiki are back to learning with the help of their teachers and families. Distance learning has continued into the New Year due to COVID-19, but this does not mean that our keiki are not able to continue to learn, grow, and develop at home! Here are some of the fun activities our keiki have engaged in these first few weeks of the New Year!

Healthy vs Unhealthy

Kahiau from Pohakea was able to sort healthy and unhealthy foods on a paper chart. His mom took this opportunity to create some items for both categories that she knew her son was familiar with. Kahiau was able to categorize the food items one by one and identify the difference between a healthy and unhealthy snack and placed it on the chart correctly. Keep eating healthy Kahiau!

Creating a Healthy Lunch

Sydney from Lanakila I engaged in a conversation about eating healthy while spending time with her mom at home. While eating some vegetables, they talked about the importance of eating healthy foods and how it would make Sydney’s body stronger. Sydney was able to recall and make these real world connections from previous lessons with her Head Start teachers. 


Mia from Wahiawa UMC I classroom, shared her self-portrait with Head Start staff and teachers on Zoom. She was able to demonstrate knowledge about herself and express what is important to her through her drawing. Self-portrait activities like this one helps children build their own sense of identity and personal development.

M is for MOM

Fletcher from Kunia II  identified the letter of the week by searching and finding some words that begin or end with the letter ‘M’. With his knowledge of the alphabet, he was able to find and circle the letter M correctly for words such as mom, movie, mix and make! Great job and keep learning Fletcher!

A Masterpiece!

Jose from Aiea 1 explored the visual arts by using different colored paints and a straw to blow and spread the paint on his artwork paper. Jose showed off his creativity by choosing the colors for his masterpiece!