Maui Strong

Join SilverSage in Helping Members of the Maui Community Restore Their Lives

SilverSage Management Services operates an office based in Maui, Hawaii. In the aftermath of the recent devastating wildfires, we have been intrinsically involved on the front lines as local charities help multitudes of displaced residents meet their daily needs. Thousands upon thousands of residents are without homes and struggling to receive the supplies they need to survive.

The Challenges

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With so many people rendered homeless and without means of support, there is currently a never-ending stream of needs to be met. Whenever one gets addressed, however, several others pop up to take its place. Through the efforts of many on the island, we have advanced from sheer chaos to more organized chaos.

There is such a great need. In addition to government assistance, community-run charities have stepped in to help fill the void as best as possible.

We have seen local nonprofit organizations help find temporary housing for as many people as possible after the closure of some shelters. Commodity donations that had been sent to those closed shelters were subsequently left behind. Volunteers, however, gathered the abandoned supplies and stored them in their homes before driving them around the community to places where they were most needed. The volunteers then found a vacant store, where the remaining supplies were relocated and distributed to those in need, no questions asked.

Word has spread, and attendance at the Donation Hub seems to double daily. Like the ocean breaking on the burned shores around us, the needs come in waves. Those affected literally have nothing. Daily necessities of food and water are distributed there, with residents taking only what they need for that day as they don’t have the means to store anything.

At first, the need for toothbrushes, items of personal hygiene, and underwear were primary necessities. Then came diapers, baby clothes, and formula. Pet food was also a big need. Then, school supplies.

Each day, we make a list of requested items that we do not have in the Donation Hub. Money donations immediately turn into trips to the store to try and buy those items. One recent list included peanut butter, mac and cheese, tweezers, men’s work gloves, men’s long pants, women’s makeup, automatic pencils for school children, and pet food.

One donor sent 200 backpacks stuffed with school supplies, granola bars, T-shirts, and hats. They were gone in three days. Now, food, water, cooking utensils, crockpots, frying pans, air mattresses, tents, blankets, and pillows are all flying off the shelves. There is no immediate end in sight to what residents will need.

Even those lucky enough to have not lost property or their lives to fire have been indirectly affected. Many are dealing with contaminated water and a loss of power. Many have lost their jobs because so many facets of normal life on the island are tourism-based and funded.

Neighboring islands are sending supplies to replenish the stores, yet bare shelves remain. Some of the sights we’ve seen can never be unseen. Rebuilding will be a process that lasts years.

The Blessings

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With every passing day, we are reminded of simple pleasures we used to take for granted. The resilience of the local residents is strong, and it is inspiring to see our Hawaiian community rising up to these previously unimagined challenges. Neighbors are helping neighbors. Small church groups are coming over and just stepping in and voluntarily cleaning land and giving hugs. Witnessing the human response to tragedy has been heartwarming. We have come so far since the fires, but there is so far yet to go.

One lady from a nonprofit organization on the Big Island reached out and said she had donors ready to give, but they wanted to make sure it went to a legitimate relief organization. She has been sending boxes and boxes of donations for us to take to one of our donation hubs. Such unexpected kindness. We are blessed to have made a new friend with a big heart.

We are also helping with another nonprofit community group that was formed to provide fresh fruit and vegetables to the people of Lahaina who are staying in tents on their burned lands. There’s a small group of families involved, and our goal is to raise $1,000 a day, which we will take to the morning markets and use to buy as much fresh produce as we can. Those items are taken by truckload to Lahaina and given directly to the people in need. The fresh produce is appreciated so much and typically gone within an hour.

You are our blessing! Thank you so much to our friends and family on the mainland for stepping up and giving from your heart. Ever since the fires, we have personally been blessed with prayers, cash donations, boxes of necessary supplies, and even drawings/pictures and encouraging notes from school children. Churches have taken up donations and sent us supplies and cash. Our grandson asked his classmates for money to help “stop the fires on Maui.” His classmates gave all they had, and the sweetest $14 came our way, and was used to buy lunches for children that were relocated. Every little bit helps. Thank you so much for your thoughtfulness and kindness. We appreciate you!

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Our grandson’s class raised $14 and created messages of hope for victims of the Maui wildfires.

Where to Donate

Many people have asked us how they can help and where they can donate to organizations that will do the most good. We suggest those that are being run by the local communities. Here are a few that we have been involved with and have seen firsthand the great work they are doing with the limited resources they have:

Upcountry Strong runs the Pukalani Donation Hub, where everyone volunteers their time. All funds and donations go to those in need.

Note: Please include a note with your donation that you would like the funds to go toward the Maui Wildfire relief effort.

This group of families has the goal of raising $1,000 per day to buy fresh produce for those still living on their land in Lahaina.

Thank you to all those who have reached out to us with support in the aftermath of this tragedy!
We invite you to donate if you are able.