When disaster strikes on Maui, the community responds. This happened even before any “official” relief efforts were on site after the recent fires. The caring spirit of residents for each other, the land and sea, known in Hawaiian as Malama, is a positive force. As a visitor, you may want to join in, and make your visit to Maui not only unique, but also meaningful.
Here are a few ways to get involved volunteering on an upcoming visit.
Volunteering on Vacation with a Fire Charity
For these opportunities, it is best to sign up before you arrive, so you can be matched with an organization that has a need that fits your time schedule. You may need to be a little flexible with your schedule to participate in some volunteer opportunities. However, there is very low demand for many regular tourism activities, so you can book adventures around helping out.
HandsOnMaui is a County of Maui-managed resource that lists upcoming volunteer events. They continue to add events that directly help fire victims. Fill out their form one to two weeks before arriving to get matched with a Maui volunteer event. You can also select the Opportunities tab, type “fire” into the search field, and browse the types of opportunities available for direct fire relief.
Is Volunteering Required?
In a word, no.
Part of Maui’s regenerative tourism initiatives is to strengthen relations between visitors and residents, provide authentic engagement and experiences with Hawaiian culture. While volunteering provides these unique opportunities, simply visiting, shopping at locally owned businesses and being mindful and compassionate is a great way to support the community right now.
Volunteering to Protect Natural Resources
One of the most enjoyable, and easiest, ways to volunteer on vacation is by participating in a beach cleanup. Maui Surfrider Foundation hosts monthly beach cleanups at different beaches in Maui. The Maui Ocean Center Marine Institute also has a beach cleanup program. Enjoy a few hours at the beach with supplies provided, and see how much trash can be kept out of the marine environment, benefiting all ocean life. Some programs have been on hold during the fire recovery, but we expect them to resume in November.
An Important Opportunity for Dog Lovers
If you could paw-sibly spare some time with a furry friend on Maui, there is an overabundance of dogs that would love an outing to the beach or forest walk. Since the fires, the Maui Humane Society is bursting with dogs who would love to share a few hours of your vacation away from the shelter. The program is called “Beach Buddies,” and you can learn more and sign up here.
A Great Maui Condo to Come Home To
All of our Maui condo resorts are open and warmly welcome your visit. A fully equipped beach condo is a nice place to rejuvenate after your Maui volunteer experience!