Easter Seals Hawaii Expanding Reach for Oahu Youth Enrichment Program

Thanks to City and County of Honolulu’s $187,000 Grant-in-Aid

Easter Seals Hawaii, one of the state’s largest nonprofit organizations, expects to see more than a four-fold increase in participation in its Youth Enrichment Services (YES) program over the coming year, thanks to a $187,000 grant-in-aid from the City and County of Honolulu, according to Jennifer La`a, Easter Seals Hawaii’s Director of Home and Community Based Services.

YES focuses on age appropriate activities that help school age children with special needs increase daily living skills through the use of computers, cooking, art, music, community excursions and sports. Day camp activities are also offered during school intersession breaks.

“This is the first year that we have been a recipient of a grant-in-ad for youth services and the funds will allow us to now offer our program to more in need,” La`a said.

La`a noted there is currently about a dozen participants enrolled in the program, and the grant would allow Easter Seals Hawaii to accommodate up to 55 participants. The program is open to school age children with special needs and their siblings, who range from six to 22 years old. There may be some adults who also are eligible to participate in the Youth Enrichment Services program because children with special needs can attend high school until age 22.

Both the Honolulu and Kapolei sites are accepting enrollment applications. Space is limited and registration is based on a first come, first served basis. Those interested in signing up for the afterschool program may contact Jennifer Norton at jnorton@eastersealhawaii.org (808) 529-1725.

The 15th Annual Gingerbread Family Festival is around the corner!

The 15th Annual Gingerbread Family Festival

Morimoto headshot

This year we are excited to welcome Honorary “Iron” Chef Masaharu Morimoto. He will be helping us promote this wonderful holiday tradition and is donating his Executive Chefs from Maui and Oahu to be judges at those events. Please tell all your family and friends that kit sales have begun, and are going fast! To order they can call 1-888-295-2626, or online gingerbreadhawaii.com.


Saturday, December 6, Kahului, Maui
Sunday, December 7, Hilo, Hawaii
Saturday, December 13, Lihue, Kauai
Sunday, December 14, Honolulu, Oahu

This is our last big event of 2014, and we are calling for volunteers. Please consider joining the fun and supporting Easter Seals Hawaii. For more information contact Stacy Hanohano at 808-529-1711, or email shanohano@eastersealshawaii.org. MAHALO!