12 Ways to Support the Black Community in Hawai‘i
Here are some local organizations to support and resources to learn more about the history and culture of the Black community in Hawai‘i.
Photo: Jim DiCarlo / The Pōpolo Project
If you passed by Honolulu Hale last weekend, you may have seen it illuminated in black and yellow in honor of Juneteenth, the annual holiday that celebrates the ending of slavery in the U.S., and in recognition of the Black Lives Matter movement. As a result of a resolution passed by Mayor Kirk Caldwell earlier last week, the City and County of Honolulu will officially recognize Juneteenth as an annual day of honor and reflection going forward.
But just because Juneteenth has passed does not mean you shouldn’t continue to educate yourself and contribute in ways that you can. Across the Islands, there are ways to get involved, either by donating to local Black-led nonprofits or learning about the history and culture of the Black community in Hawai‘i.
The Pōpolo Project
Photo: Nicole M. Woo / The Pōpolo Project
The Pōpolo Project is a Hawai‘i-based nonprofit that hopes to redefine “what it means to be Black in Hawai‘i—and in turn what it means to be Black in the world—by creating spaces and opportunities for our people to radically reconnect to ourselves, our communities, our ancestors, and the land.”
The group has hosted The Black Futures Ball and various exhibitions at the Honolulu Museum of Art. In addition to creating community functions, The Pōpolo Project creates media and stories that celebrate black lives and cultures in Hawai‘i and the Pacific. A contribution to the organization will go toward educational events and opportunities. Click here to find out more about volunteering, donating and other ways to get involved.
NAACP Hawai‘i Branch
The NAACP (National Association for the Advancement of Colored People) is the largest and oldest civil rights organization in the country. Its mission is to promote racial equality and fight racial injustices within the legal system. The Hawai‘i branch was created in 1961. Follow the nonprofit organization’s Facebook page for events and updates.
Obama Hawaiian Africana Museum
Formerly known as the African American Diversity Cultural Center Hawai‘i, the organization changed its name to honor the 44th U.S. president’s childhood legacy. The Obama Hawaiian Africana Museum hopes to preserve and perpetuate African culture here in Hawai‘i. In addition to providing educational resources, the organization hopes to empower black pre-kindergarten through 12th grade students to prepare them for future leadership roles in the community. Click here to check out its website.
African Americans on Maui Association
The African Americans on Maui Association hopes to educate people about the history, culture, contributions and experiences of people of African descent in the United States and Hawai‘i. The AAOMA promotes research, culture exhibits, arts, scholarships and teaching of the African American experience, and sponsors a wide variety of programs on topics and issues. Click here to learn more.
The ACLU of Hawaiʻi
The American Civil Liberties Union of Hawai‘i is a nonprofit that has been protecting the civil rights and civil liberties of people in the Hawaiian Islands, Guam and American Samoa since 1965. Its current campaign, Smart Justice Hawaiʻi, advocates for eliminating racial disparities in the justice system and pushes for prosecutorial reform. Click here to check out more of its campaigns.
Hawaiʻi Community Bail Fund
The Hawai‘i Community Bail Fund is a member of the National Bail Fund Network, which hopes to change local bail systems and reduce incarceration nationwide. In celebration of Juneteenth and in solidarity with the Movement for Black Lives, the Hawai‘i Community Bail Fund is carrying out a mass bailout action, soliciting bail support requests from ‘ohana and friends of those who are incarcerated simply because they can’t afford their cash bail amount. Click here to learn more and donate to the organization.
What to Read
The Pōpolo Project has curated a list of online articles about black history as well as informational guides that put the black experience in the context of Hawai‘i. The #PopoloSyllabus is a growing document and the creators encourage people to add to it. To contribute sources, contact firstname.lastname@example.org or @PopoloProject on Twitter.
Share with your friends on Instagram
Anti-Racism Resources, Hawaiʻi Edition
A slideshow with a link to a Google Doc containing dozens of articles, resources and organizations to support in Hawai‘i. Share on your Instagram story so your followers can access it.
Important Dates for Hawai‘i’s Elections
This graphic has a list of dates for Hawai‘i’s upcoming elections. Share this with your friends and don’t forget to register to vote!
Other Links and Actionable Items:
Black Owned Restaurants and Eateries in Hawai‘i (frolichawaii.com)
Register to Vote (olvr.hawaii.gov)