ALICE Conversations: Eline’s Story

(Sponsored) A partner organization with Aloha United Way, Waikīkī Community Center is participating in AUW’s ALICE Initiative to support upward financial mobility.


Waikiki Community Center

Photo: Courtesy of Aloha United Way



Crystal has assisted Eline and her husband Felix with everything from organizing tax forms to sorting out medical bills. “Sometimes you don’t know what you don’t know,” Eline said.


Waikīkī Community Center’s (WCC) mission is to care for our kupuna, keiki and community as ‘ohana and Crystal, the couple’s WCC Senior Assistance Coordinator, has done just that. During the pandemic, Crystal adjusted her day-to-day work to check on the couple by phone, referring them to farmers markets that catered to kupuna, and making sure they got their medical needs met.


Now, as the state begins to recover from the effects of the pandemic, local nonprofit organizations like Waikīkī Community Center can begin to resume more of their pre-pandemic services.


In fact, Waikīkī Community Center is one of many partner agencies that participate in Aloha United Way’s ALICE Initiative. These agencies support upward financial mobility for lower-income families and individuals in Hawai‘i. ALICE is an acronym for Asset Limited, Income Constrained, Employed and it’s a new way to define and understand the households that earn above the Federal Poverty Level, but not enough to afford a bare-bones household budget.


For far too many in Hawai‘i, the cost of living outpaces what they earn, making it hard to get ahead. These ALICE households struggle to manage even their most basic needs: housing, food, transportation, childcare, health care, and technology.


This summer, Aloha United Way is hosting a virtual summer conversation series to shine a light on Hawai‘i’s ALICE population and provide a venue for community conversation about making a greater impact together through collective impact. The remaining virtual events will take place on July 29, and August 26, and all are invited to join.


Let’s work together to create equitable communities where every family and individual are empowered, thriving, and able to weather acute and chronic hardships. Learn more here.


Alice Flier