Second Annual Pacific Water Conference Community Service Event
with Hawaii Water Environment Association, American Water Works Association, in Partnership with Livable Hawaii Kai Hui
When: Saturday, January 31 from 9am-noon
Where: Keawawa Wetland
What: Removing shrubs and invasive plants; planting native species.
Over 25 HWEA members, friends and family gathered to volunteer at the second annual Pacific Water Conference community service event with AWWA and Livable Hawaii Kai Hui. The physical labor comprised of removing invasive species and planting native species.
According to Livable Hawaii Kai Hui:
The Trust for Public Land is working with a non-profit community organization Livable Hawai‘i Kai Hui (The Hui) to protect a 5-acre property in heavily-developed Maunalua, O‘ahu. The property includes Hāwea heiau complex and a portion of Keawawa wetland. The property contains numerous petroglyphs, an ancient niu (coconut) grove, a once spring-fed well, and many ancient rock formations thought to be house structures, a Tahitian style heiau, agricultural terraces, burial sites, and Hāwea heiau. Oral and written accounts from 8 centuries ago reflect the importance of Hāwea heiau as one of the places that La‘amaikahiki’s canoe landed carrying with it one of only two pahu heiau (religious drums) – Opuku and Hāwea – used ceremonially at the royal birthing grounds of Kūkaniloko, in the piko (center) of O‘ahu. Keawawa wetland is home to approximately 9 of the remaining 300 endangered ‘alae ‘ula (Hawaiian moorhen), as well as indigenous ‘auku‘u (Black-crowned night heron), pinao (Hawaiian dragonfly), and possibly the ‘ōpe‘ape‘a (Hawaiian hoary bat) that historically lived in the area.
The Hui’s goal is to protect, restore and mālama (take care of) Hāwea heiau complex and Keawawa wetland, and to create a cultural renaissance within Maunalua through community education of the cultural and natural resources located on the property. The Hui preliminarily envisions a small entrance space where visitors can learn about the area’s importance before entering, the restoration and preservation of all cultural sites, an environment dominated by native species, a pā pahu (pahu drumming area), a fishing hale, a la‘au lapa‘au (healing and medicinal plant) garden, and a thriving native wetland ecosystem that provides additional protected habitat and nesting grounds for the endangered ‘alae ‘ula and other native species. The property will be a community owned and managed cultural heritage park that will provide educational, cultural, and recreational opportunities to the Maunalua community and the broader public.