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Maui chefs raise more than $38,000 for Project Kokua

By Staff | Aug 16, 2018

The sold-out benefit was held at Maui Tropical Plantation on July 8.

WAIKAPU – The culinary community of Maui joined forces last month for Project Kokua for Kauai & Hawaii Island, raising more than $38,000 to support neighbors, friends, families and farmers impacted by the recent natural disasters on both islands.

The sold-out culinary fundraiser, held at Maui Tropical Plantation on July 8, evolved through the efforts of Chef Lyndon Honda, executive chef at Sheraton Maui Resort & Spa, along with Lisa and Halemanu Villiarimo.

Lisa is the owner of Aloha Lifestyle, a lifestyle and food consulting company, and entertainer. Halemanu won the 2018 Na Hoku Hanohano Award for Island Music Album of the Year.

Maui chefs and restaurants served up an eclectic sampling of dishes for guests to enjoy, and live music by Halemanu added to the convivial atmosphere.

Volunteers donated their time and resources to help bring the event to life, including Malika Dudley, Maui Now meteorologist and Hilo native, who emceed the event, and main contributing sponsors Maui Tropical Plantation, Sheraton Maui Resort & Spa, Aloha Lifestyle, Halemanu Music and Smythe-Fujiwara Designs.

“From start to finish, Project Kokua for Kauai & Hawaii Island was executed in less than a month. It’s inspiring to watch the local community come together to support our ‘ohana on Kauai and Hawaii Islands, especially in such a short time frame. We surpassed our donation goal, and the overwhelming success of this fundraiser was accomplished because of the true aloha spirit of our community,” said Chef Honda.

The event also featured a silent auction with more than 100 gift items auctioned off, raising $13,192 of the total amount.

All proceeds raised from the event will go toward relief efforts distributed through Rotary Lahaina Foundation along with Malama Kauai and Rotary Club of Pahoa.

Donations are still gladly accepted. For information, contact Chef Honda at cheflyndonhonda@gmail.com.