Triple Border
Hawaiian Community Assets Newsletter
Quarterly Newsletter

Oct 2014 

In This Issue
Native Hawaiian Housing Award: Nanakuli
OHA Invests $60k in Finanical Literacy Project
Young Hawaiian Leader Recognized as Innovative Financial Educator
Kauai: Become a Certified Financial Trainer
Mortgage Assistance Fairs In Your Community
HCA Receives National Award
VISTA Builds Capacity on Molokai
VISTA Members Join HCA to Fight Poverty in Hawaii
Quick Links
Mahalo to Our
Annual Partners
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SIC Logo
Territorial Logo
Gentry Logo

2014 Homebuyer
Workshop Schedule 
Kahua Waiwai Homebuyer Ed Cover  
Workshops are free to attend
Attendees MUST  first submit a completed client intake packet before workshop registration

Kapolei - DHHL Hale Ponoi
8:30a - 5:30p 
  • Oct 25th
  • Nov 15th
  • Dec 13th



Wailuku - Queen Liliuokalani Children's Center
8:30a - 5:30p
  • TBA
  • TBA  
  • TBA
Big Island
Hilo - Hawaii County Office 
8:30a - 5p  
  • Oct 25th
  • Nov 22nd
  • Dec 20th 

Kauai County Building -

includes 2 part workshop series
5p - 9p 

  • Nov 18th & 20th
  • Dec 9th & 11th



For more information or to register for a workshop in your community, contact HCA at 1.866.400.1116


Hawaiian Community Assets (HCA) is a nonprofit HUD-certified housing counseling agency and Native community development financial institution.  HCA offers this quarterly newsletter to provide you with updated information on current programs and services.
HCA's mission is to build the capacity of low and moderate income communities to achieve and sustain economic self-sufficiency with a particular focus on Native Hawaiians.

HCA services and products include:  
  • Youth and Family Financial Education
  • Renter Education and Counseling 
  • Pre-Purchase Homebuyer Education and Counseling
  • Post-Purchase Education and Counseling
  • Foreclosure/Lease Cancellation Prevention Services
  • Training and Technical Assistance
  • MATCH Savings (IDAs)
  • Micro-Loans
  • Loan Packaging
HCA Unveils Financial Storybook for Hawaii Children Under 8!
From Left to Right: Shelly Okmura, Jeff Gilbreath, Trinity Shiroma, Randy Shiroma.


HONOLULU, HI - On Monday, September 29th, HCA held its first annual Sip of Aloha youth financial education fundraiser to unveil its latest Kahua Waiwai, Keiki Edition(c), an age-appropriate, place-based financial education curriculum for Hawaii children under 8.


"We're excited about this new financial storybook.  It gives parents a fun, interactive tool to share life skills with their children and will help build foundations for Hawaii's future homeowners, college graduates, and entrepreneurs," said HCA Executive Director, Jeff Gilbreath.  "We Mahalo the young leaders and families who shared with us the importance of teaching financial skills to our children starting at a very young age.  It is with their guidance and encouragement that HCA is proud to offer this book to the people of Hawaii."


The curriculum was designed and illustrated by 3 young leaders (2 pictured above) from YouthVision Hawaii, an Oahu-based nonprofit building tomorrow's leaders, today.

"When I was 9 I participated in the first workshop (with the Opio Edition)," shared YouthVision illustrator/designer, Trinity Shiroma at the event.  "Now I got the chance to help create the Keiki Edition!"

With a dual goal of supporting economic development within the local arts community, the Sip of Aloha event included live music by Paula Fuga, live art by Dustin Fernandez, and spoken word by Justin White.  Financial support was provided by HCA's Annual Partners and Event Sponsors who invested funds in the organization's youth financial education program, purchasing handbooks for 600 Hawaii children so they can receive free financial education in 2015.


For more information about HCA's Kahua Waiwai Keiki Edition(c), contact Financial Training Program Coordinator, Lahela Williams, at 808.587.7660 or via email at


Mahalo to Our Annual Partners for Investing in Youth Financial Education!


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Nanakuli Hawaiian Homestead Community Association Receives 2014 Native Hawaiian Housing Award



HCA is proud to announce the winner of the 2014 Native Hawaiian Housing Award - Nanakuli Hawaiian Homestead Community Association!


The award was accepted by Kamake Kanehele (pictured above), president of the Nanakuli associaton, during the 13th Annual Native Hawaiian Convention.  The Nanakuli Hawaiian Homestead Community Association received the award for its commuity's leadership in the first-ever Hawaiian Homelands Beneficiary-run, nonprofit affordable rental housing development project, Hale Makana O Nanakuli.


In response to overcrowded households, severely dilapidated houses, and the lack of affordable housing opportunities in the Nanakuli Homesteads, Nanakuli Hawaiian Homestead Community Association forged a working relationship with the nonprofit Hawaiian Community Development Board and California company Urban Housing Communities to develop a $15 million, 48-unit affordable rental housing project in Nanakuli.  Construction was completed December 20, 2013.  The Hale Makana O Nanakuli project (pictured below) is now providing safe, secure transitional and long-term rental housing designed to meet the needs of Nanakuli community, with focus on Nanakuli's low-income Hawaiian families who earn 40% and 30% below the annual median income.  It is providing immediate relief to many Nanakuli families with too many members living in the same household, to families living in dangerous dilapidated houses, or families who have been forced to abandon their homes.



Hale Makana was designed to help the Nanakuli homestead community by providing alternate housing, but within a major "Village Center" that also includes multi-purpose learning, community health, and commercial retail centers.  Today, the Nanakuli Hawaiian Homestead Community Association is furthering its efforts under the name of the Nanakuli Village Center Community Development Corporation.


Hale Makana O Nanakuli stands as a testament to tireless work of Nanakuli Beneficiaries in addressing the housing needs of their community - from keiki to kupuna.  The project shows Hawaiian Homesteads across our islands what is possible when native Hawaiian Beneficiaries are provided access to the capital and resources necessary to realize affordable housing opportunities for their family, friends, and neighbors.   Hale Makana O Nanakuli will serve as a shining example of what Hawaiian Homesteaders are able to accomplish when they are committed, never give up on their dreams, and fight for the housing rights of native Hawaiian Beneficiaries.

OHA Invests $60,000 in HCA Native Hawaiian Financial Literacy Project


HAWAII - The State Office of Hawaiian Affairs (OHA) has awarded HCA $60,000 to implement the Native Hawaiian Financial Literacy Project beginning November 1, 2014.


The funds will support the delivery of free, HUD-certified financial literacy workshops and financial counseling to 250 Native Hawaiians across the state who are at or below 250% the Federal Poverty Guidelines.  Workshops and counseling will be delivered by HUD-certified trainers and counselors using HCA's culturally-relevant curriculum, Kahua Waiwai: Building a Foundation of Wealth(c).


"We mahalo OHA for their investment in HUD-certified financial literacy - services that have proven successful in assisting families [in Hawaii] and across the nation build savings, reduce debt, and realize their financial and housing goals," said HCA Executive Director, Jeff Gilbreath.


According to Gilbreath, the project will build a pipeline of financially qualified Hawaiians able to access capital for financial and economic goals, including career development, affordable housing, education, and small business development.  Participants who complete workshops and counseling will be eligible to receive $2,000 in match savings for rental housing and loans for debt reduction, small business development, home rehabilitation, and mortgage reinstatement to prevent foreclosure.  Financial products will be provided by Native Community Development Financial Institutions - Council for Native Hawaiian Advancement and Hawaii Community Lending, Office of Hawaiian Affairs' Malama Loan Program, and mainstream financial institutions.


During the project period, HCA will track the amount of capital participants are able to secure through match savings and loans as well as increases in household income, savings, and net worth and decreases in debt and debt-to-income ratio.


Enroll Today!

Call HCA today to enroll in free financial literacy workshops and cousneling at 808.587.7886, (toll-free) 1.866.400.1116, or visit

Young Hawaiian Leader Recognized Nationally as Innovative Financial Educator


Lahela Headshot HAWAII - Young Hawaiian Leader and HCA Program Coordinator, Lahela Williams (pictured right), has been recognized nationally as an Innovative Financial Educator.  The recognition will include a $1,000 sponsorship by Visa Inc. for Ms. Williams to attend the Jump$tart Coalition National Educator Conference in Los Angeles on November 8-10, 2014.


"I am humbled to be one of six individuals selected across the country for recognition as an Innovative Financial Educator," shared Williams, who was born and raised in the Papakolea Homestead community. "This accolade really belongs to our cohort of Certified Kahua Waiwai Trainers, who have collectively influenced our work.  HCA's culturally-relevant, community based approach to financial education has proven effective for our low- and moderate-income families.  I look forward to attending the conference in California to bring back new resources and materials."


Ms. Williams was selected as an Innovative Financial Educator among 386 applicants nationwide.  She was chosen for her work in leading a cohort of certified financial trainers who have collectively served more than 556 Waianae and Nanakuli High School students with financial education over the last 2 years.


Ms. Williams joined HCA in 2011 with a background in community organizing and youth education.  She coordinates HCA's Kahua Waiwai Financial Training Program, provides HUD-certified housing and financial education services, and offers training and technical assistance to organization partners for the delivery of Kahua Waiwai Financial Education Programs statewide.


Her professional certifications include HUD certification through NeighborWorks America for rental, pre-purchase, and financial capability counseling, pre-purchase workshop delivery, and youth leadership development.  She has served on the Boards of Kewalo Hawaiian Homestead Association and Kula No Na Po'e Hawaii.  As a member of the Hawaii Jump$tart Coalition, Ms. Williams has been active in policy/advocacy to support Universal Children's Savings Accounts in Hawaii. 

Kahua Waiwai Financial Trainer Certification Course

Hawaii's Only Course Offering Trainer Certification in Place-Based Financial Education



November 13th & 14th


Kahua Waiwai Cover

HCA Office

4523 Ioane Road

Anahola, HI 96703

(white building located in the

Anahola marketplace) 



Certification training offered by Hawaii-based, nonprofit HUD-certified financial education provider, Hawaiian Community Assets.  Certifies staff and volunteers from community-based organizations, education and financial institutions, government agencies, and businesses to deliver place-based financial education using the Kahua Waiwai: Building a Foundation of Wealth(c) curriculum.


"[Kahua Waiwai] is the only culturally-competent financial education curriculum I've seen out there."

~ Alex Logan, Salvation Army Trainer, 2009


Attendees receive:

*16 hours of training and instruction

*1 participant handbook

*1 instructors guide with instructor cd-rom

*Access to Kahua Waiwai(c) curriculum for youth and adult participants

*Ongoing training and technical assistance

*Free credit report review and counseling by HUD-certified HCA staff 



Click Here to Register for Only $150!

Mortgage Assistance Fairs Offer Free HUD Counseling and Up to $30k in Loans for Mortgage Payments


Money HouseHAWAII - HCA has scheduled Mortgage Assistance Fairs on Kauai, Hawaii Island, and Oahu now through December to assist homeowners on and off Hawaiian Homelands sustain homeownership and prevent foreclosure.


In Fairs held recently on Maui and Molokai, HCA has served 95 families with HUD counseling to help develop affordable household budgets, review credit, and create action plans to sustain homeownership.  Homeowners who attend the Fairs are given the opportunity to meet one-on-one with a HUD-certified counselor to identify options and actions to prevent foreclosure.


Upcoming Fairs will be conducted at the following locations in October, November, and December:




Anahola - HCA Office

4523 Ioane Road (white building)

(P) 632.2070


Kekaha - Kekaha Enterprise Center

7720 Ulili Road

(P) 587.7623




Hilo - HCA Office

260 Kamehameha Avenue, #207

(P) 934.0801


Kailua-Kona - Kealakehe Intermediate School

74-5062 Onipaa Street

(P) 587.7655



Kamuela - Homestreet Bank

67-1185 Mamalahoa Highway Suite D-106

(P) 587.7655


Papakolea - Papakolea Community Development Center

2150 Tantalus Drive

(P) 587.7623



Waimanalo - Queen Liliuokalani Children's Center

41-425 Ilauhole Street

(P) 587.7655



Kapolei - Council for Native Hawaiian Advancement

2149 Lauwiliwili Street, Suite 200

(P) 587.7624




All Fairs held from 1p - 9p.


Registration encouraged.


Call 808.587.7657.



HCA staff have a combined 50+ years experience serving Hawaiian Home Lands Beneficiaries and Lesees with:

  • Budget and credit counseling
  • Communicating with lenders
  • Securing loan modifications and workout plans
  • Accessing grants and loans for mortgage reinstatement
  • Preparing Successors for homeownership

Attend a Fair in Your Community

1) Call to register: 808.587.7657 or email

2) Get Started Today - Complete a Client Intake Packet 


National Award to HCA for Financial Products Targeting Homeless Native Hawaiians


WASHINGTON, DC - Hawaii nonprofit, Hawaiian Community Assets (HCA), was recognized as one of five leading asset building organizations in the nation as part of the 2014 Assets Learning Conference Platforms for Prosperity Contest.


HCA, a HUD-certified housing counseling agency and Native Community Development Financial Institution, was recognized during the Conference awards dinner for the success of its Renters MATCH Savings Account and Credit Builder Micro-Loan products helping homeless Native Hawaiians secure affordable rental housing.  Renters MATCH provides a 4:1 match on participant savings up to $500 to pay rent and deposits, while the Credit Builder Micro-Loan helps homeless Native Hawaiians reduce debt and improve credit.  The products were established by HCA in 2011 with investments from the State Office of Hawaiian Affairs and have resulted in stable, affordable rental housing for 134 Native Hawaiian children and adults.


HCA received the Where We Live Award for its work with Native Hawaiians to provide bridges out of homelessness and create stability and opportunity for families.  View Hawaiian Community Assets Video and Awards Article here. 


ALC Conference Awards Emcee and CFED Chief External Relations Officer, Kim Pate (pictured below, right), shared her reflections on the Conference awards,


Source: Corporation for Enterprise Development

That evening we honored five organizations on the frontlines for their commitment to transforming lives one at a time through innovation, dedication and delivering essential services. Five leaders in the field committed to creating financial security in their communities across meaningful and tangible platforms(...)People committed to a simple but powerful idea that by creating economic opportunity, we can alleviate poverty. People who have bought into the game-changing idea that given a reasonable opportunity, every family can save, build assets and create a more prosperous future for themselves and their children.


The Assets Learning Conference is an annual convening of organizations engaged in asset building strategies for low- and moderate-income communities across the nation.  The Conference is held by the Corporation for Enterprise Development (CFED), a 35-year old national nonprofit that

empowers low- and moderate-income households to build and preserve assets by advancing policies and programs that help them achieve the American Dream, including buying a home, pursuing higher education, starting a business and saving for the future.  More information about CFED.

VISTA Program Brings Kahua Waiwai to Molokai, Improves Students' Financial Literacy

by Jennifer Brown, Sust`āina ble Molokai


HOOLEHUA, HI - Financial literacy is an integral part of our everyday lives.  However, it is currently not a mandated subject within our educational system.  Thus, many of us learn how to manage our money through our experiences and unfortunately, our mistakes.

In 2012, HCA partnered with Sust`āina ble Molokai to integrate financial literacy programming on Molokai.  This was a result of Sust`āina ble Molokai's 2012 Agricultural Needs Assessment and the 2003 Focus Maui Nui proceedings, which indicated a significant lack of island food security and need for agricultural entrepreneurial support.  Together, HCA and Sust`āina ble Molokai incorporated Kahua Waiwai into existing institutions, led by AmeriCorps VISTA member, Jennifer Brown (pictured left with Molokai youth).  With an initial investment from the Office of Hawaiian Affairs (OHA), 5 key Molokai residents were able to receive training to become certified to teach Kahua Waiwai, Opio Edition(c).  As certified trainers, these individuals introduced Kahua Waiwai into select programs on Molokai, including the Molokai Middle School April 2014.


"Jennifer's passion and enthusiasm are the reasons for Kahua Waiwai's success on Molokai," said Jeff Gilbreath, HCA Executive Director.  "She has been able to bring the community together to define their financial needs and delivered a program that is helping increase financial capabilities of children and families.  Her hard work is truly building community capacity."


During month, after-school students at the Molokai Middle School were introduced to financial literacy concepts.  Lessons were taught on financial goal setting, the cost and benefits of financial decisions, andbudgeting and savings.  Lessons were age-appropriate and designed based on the Kahua Waiwai curriculum and the students' financial literacy baseline as per the February 2014 focus group conducted by the current AmeriCorps member and coordinator of Molokai financial literacy efforts at Sust`āina ble Molokai.


Two 7th graders that participated in the program stated they "learned to use money carefully" and "learned to focus on [individual] needs instead of wants".  To help document financial learning growth, pre- and post-assessment tests were administered which proved Molokai Middle School students improved their ability to comprehend financial concepts.

  • 36% increased their capability to differentiate a "need";
  • 30% improved their ability to assess a "want";
  • 17% improved their aptitude to recognize a budget as a written plan for monthly income and expenses, and;
  • 37% improved their capacity to determine income, expenses, and savings as three elements within a budget.


Financial literacy lessons were planned within the after-school setting and integrated into the core curriculum classes at the Molokai Middle School through the remainder of the school year. Sust`āina ble Molokai continuously seeks to build community-based partnerships in order to increase financial literacy program capacity.


Molokai resident Suliana Aki attended a community financial workshop and proclaimed the experience to be "very important for Molokai in order for people to become aware and take control of their money situations".


In the coming year, the organization hopes to extend programming efforts to the Molokai High School with the aim to build business and entrepreneurial support programs based upon Kahua Waiwai financial literacy principles.  In accordance with HCA's original vision for Kahua Waiwai, Sust`āina ble Molokai aspires to create significant youth financial literacy programming on Molokai in order to equip the island's future generations with the tools necessary to become capable and knowledgeable financial stewards.


For financial literacy programming inquiries on Molokai, please contact Sust`āina ble Molokai Executive Director, Emillia Noordhoek, via email at or by phone at 808.560.5410.

HCA Welcomes Group of AmeriCorps VISTAs Fighting Poverty in Hawaii


HAWAII - HCA welcomes its new group of AmeriCorps VISTA members working with the organization to fight poverty in Hawaii.  VISTA members dedicate 1-year of service to nonprofits across the nation and help build the capacity of organizations to support economic, health, education, and Veterans initiatives.  For more information about AmeriCorps VISTA, visit the VISTA website Here.

Yvonne Zgraggen was born and raised in Southern Wisconsin.  She attended Concordia College in Moorhead, MN where she double majored in German and Global Studies with an emphasis in Development Studies. After college, Yvonne spent a year serving as the Refugee Outreach Specialist AmeriCorps VISTA at the Minnesota Council of Churches in Mankato, Minnesota where she focused on developing programs to support newly arrived Sudanese and Somali refugees.  She then spent a year serving as an AmeriCorps State and National volunteer in Spokane, Washington where she worked at a women's shelter and taught a class on money management and responsible renting practices.  Yvonne is now serving as the Regional VISTA Leader for the Hawaii Network of VISTAs.  As VISTA Leader, Yvonne provides resources and support to the 28 VISTAs serving across Hawaii.


Bryan Gissal comes to HCA from the greater Milwaukee area in the (cold!) State of Wisconsin.  In 2010, he received a Bachelor of Business Administration degree from the University of Wisconsin - Madison. After getting his diploma, he served as a Peace Corps Volunteer in Fiji from 2010 to 2012.  There he promoted health and financial literacy initiatives in a rural village deep in the interior of Viti Levu island. His proudest accomplishment was opening a small health dispensary where over 200 people sought medical help within the first six months of starting the initiative.  This experience made him passionate about issues in the Pacific Islands.  He comes to HCA with hopes of expanding HCA's youth finacnial education program, specifically to secure funds for publishing the new Keiki curriculum so HCA can reach its goal of providing books to 3,000 youth in 2015.  Outside of HCA, he enjoys cooking, weight training, and sailing (also known as the sacred art of getting wet and becoming ill while slowly going nowhere at great expense).


Samantha Champion was born and raised in Bowling Green, Kentucky.  She attended Western Kentucky University where she studied Broadcast Communication while being an active member of the Chi Omega Fraternity and volunteering for the WKU's Newscast.  She hopes to use her talents to film inspirational footage for various nonprofits because she believes impact of non-profit organizations is indisputably far-reaching and vital to the United States' economic well-being.  Previously Samantha served as a national AmeriCorps member with Habitat for Humanity West Hawaii, building homes for partner families on the Big Island.  She is continuing her service with HCA's Building Stability in Housing Project, building the processes to help previously homeless individuals get matched with landlords across the state.  "We, who have so much, must do more to help those in need. And most of all, we must live simply, so that others may simply live."  Ed Begley, Jr.


David Chhay (Kawika) is from Long Beach, California and graduated from the University of California, Los Angeles.  He enjoys sweet scented flowers, moon lit dinners, and long walks on the beach during his free time but has an even greater passion for serving underrepresented communities.  Kawika has been an advocate for the Southeast Asian community as well as teenagers from low-income backgrounds having served in his year of VISTA with the YMCA in Los Angeles.  He is serving his second year with HCA as a Beneficiary Advocate.  He has been helping to increase awareness about HCA's services as well as creating and maintaining sustainability within its Homeowner program.  In less than 3 months, Kawika  has already amazed HCA with his unique qualities and gifts.  Karen Bugarin, a HCA Community Services Specialist, describes Kawika as "an amazing and lovely person to work with.  I am so glad he is here with us.  I don't understand how we got so lucky!" Despite the many struggles and social conditions Native Hawaiians face, Kawika is excited to play an integral role in the movement to help the Hawaiian community.