HCAP Head Start Allows Parent to Go Back to School and Work Towards a Better Future
HCAP Head Start To Provide Remote Summer Program In Response to Community Needs
Family Finds Shelter at Kumuhonua Transitional Living Center While Seeking an Affordable Housing
Helpful Tips to Save Energy During the COVID-19 Pandemic
HCAP Selects New Director of Finance

HCAP Head Start Allows Parent to Go Back to School and Work Towards a Better Future

Photo of Bernadette Pada

Bernadette, a HCAP Head Start parent and Family Advocate, recently graduated from Windward Community College. In her inspirational speech for Windward Community College’s virtual commencement caravan, Bernadette shared the pain she experienced growing up in an abusive household and having her mom incarcerated when she was only three years old. The cycle of abuse continued in her adult relationships. ”My life spiraled downhill,” Bernadette said in her speech. “But after I had my children, I knew I wanted to break that cycle of abuse. I had two choices: stay and keep doing the same thing, or do something better with my life.”

In seeking a better life for herself and her children, Bernadette decided to go back to school to pursue a career as a social worker. Throughout her time in school, she enrolled her children in the HCAP Head Start program. “My children were in the Head Start program and I knew I wanted to become a Social Worker. With the help of my HCAP Head Start Family Advocate, I was able to apply for a position here at HCAP Head Start. I was hired as a Family Advocate Trainee and continued my journey in school,” Bernadette shared.

Bernadette also signed up for the Family Development Credential, a ten week course taught and paid for by HCAP Head Start. “I completed my Family Development Credential classes with flying colors all while going to school and working full-time. I received my credential and found my way through working as a Family Advocate. HCAP Head Start was a big part of my success throughout my time at Windward Community College. They allowed me to go to school and work to further my education. Without this program, it would have taken me twice as long to finish my Associates Degree.”

Bernadette was recently accepted into the Social Work Program at UH Mānoa for fall 2020. HCAP is so proud of Bernadette and her accomplishments. Our agency continues to work towards providing opportunities and inspiration for a brighter future.

HCAP Head Start To Provide Remote Summer Program In Response to Community Needs

Photo of HCAP Head Start Summer Program

In response to helping children and families during this challenging time, HCAP Head Start is pleased to announce that our program has received funding from the Office of Head Start to continue remote teaching/distance learning from June 1, 2020 until July 17, 2020.

The unprecedented nature of this pandemic continues to affect our families, communities, state, and world. Now more than ever, our HCAP Head Start children and families need our support and guidance to prepare them for the journey ahead. Being able to conduct remote learning, while not ideal, has provided children and families a sense of comfort and familiarity during a time of such uncertainty. The transition to Kindergarten has always been a major undertaking and milestone for children and families. This year, the challenge will be that much greater as children have been out of the classroom setting for two of the most important months that prepare them for school readiness. The program’s continuation throughout the summer months should help to address these needs.

Our HCAP Head Start staff and our entire agency remains dedicated to responding to our communities needs and we are pleased to be offering our services throughout the summer months.

Family Finds Shelter at Kumuhonua Transitional Living Center While Seeking Affordable Housing

Earl, Mary, and Kekoa lived at Halawa View Apartments for many years. When the family was evicted, they faced many challenges due to their fixed budget and eventually became homeless. Fortunately, they were able to find shelter at HCAP’s Kumuhonua Transitional Living Center

While the family was living at Kumuhonua, they were constantly looking for safe and affordable housing units within their fixed income. Prior to the family moving into Kumuhonua, they had a referral for a permanent supportive housing voucher through HUD and Section-8. Earl, Mary, and Kekoa were finally able to receive the voucher after almost two years of waiting. With assistance from HCAP’s Rapid Re-housing Program and Kumuhonua, Earl, Mary and Kekoa were able to find permanent housing and become self-reliant. They are forever grateful for all the hard-work and support that HCAP Kumuhonua Transitional Living Center and Rapid Rehousing staff have provided them.

Helpful Tips to Save Energy During the COVID-19 Pandemic

Photo of wall plug

During the COVID-19 pandemic, many of us are trying to find ways to save energy and reduce our electricity bills. Here are four helpful tips that HCAP’s Weatherization Assistance Program.

1. Sleep Mode – Be sure to adjust your power management settings so your computer and monitor go into “sleep mode” when they’re not being used.

2. Lighting – Turn lights off when you leave a room, take advantage of natural light, and use lamps over your desk instead of lighting the whole area.

3. Streaming and Saving – Streaming your favorite show or movie? Using a tablet will use one-fourth the energy of a laptop. Avoid streaming on game consoles, which uses 10 times more power than streaming on a tablet or laptop.

4. Smart Strips – Using a smart power strip will shut down products that aren’t being used. Always be sure to turn off lights, fans and electronic devices when you leave the room.

HCAP’s Weatherization Assistance Program (WAP) is still accepting applications during this time. Please call us at (808) 447-5440, or email hcapwap@hcapweb.org for assistance.

HCAP Selects New Director of Finance

Photo of Spencer Lau

The Honolulu Community Action Program, Inc. (“HCAP”), a private non-profit community action agency assisting Oahu’s low-income residents to achieve self- reliance since 1965, is pleased to announce that Spencer Lau, Jr. has been named Director of Finance. The Director of Finance oversees all aspects of HCAP’s fiscal operations, providing leadership in financial administration, business planning, budgeting, and reporting. As a member of HCAP’s Executive Management Team, the Director of Finance will work closely with the Board of Directors and serve as the staff liaison of the Finance Committee.

Spencer started at HCAP in 2016 and was a Grants Manager prior to serving in his most recent position as Interim Director of Finance. Spencer holds a Bachelor of Arts in International Relations and a Master of Business Administration from Chaminade University of Honolulu.

Robert Piper, HCAP Executive Director, states “I am very appreciative that Spencer maintained stability in our fiscal department during his time as Interim Director of Finance. He has demonstrated the knowledge and ability to ensure that day-to-day operations continue running smoothly and that all fiscal standards and requirements are adhered to. Spencer has worked very well with fiscal, program, and management staff during his time at HCAP, and has earned the confidence of HCAP’s management and board with his dedication and strong work ethic.”