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Napili Kai Foundation awards scholarships

By Staff | Jun 17, 2010

NAPILI — The Napili Kai Foundation (NKF), a nonprofit organization founded in 1966, teaches local children ages 6-18 the history, arts, crafts, language and dances of Polynesia, free of charge. These children perform weekly at Napili Kai Beach Resort on Tuesdays.

The J.C. Millar Memorial Scholarship Fund was founded in 1986 to help NKF graduates and children of Napili Kai Beach Resort employees wishing to pursue their education beyond high school.

This year, Lahainaluna High School graduating senior Michael-Lloyd Akiona — whose mother, Lorene, works at Napili Kai Beach Resort — received $2,000 to pursue a career in the medical field at Kapiolani Community College.

Caitlin Panis of the Lahainaluna Class of 2010, a NKF member for three-and-a-half years, received $1,000 to pursue a degree in Photography at the University of Hawaii Maui College.

If Akiona and Panis earn grade point averages of 2.5 or above, they will be eligible to apply for further scholarship assistance for three consecutive years.

NKF alumnae Angel Melody Bode received $2,000 to help her complete her fourth year at UH Maui. A NKF member for 12 years, Angel is majoring in Art and Philosophy.

During the past year, Angel illustrated a children’s book, “Kalani’s Wish,” and will travel to Chiang Mai, Thailand next month to complete a mural at a bilingual elementary school.

Nine-year NKF member Brittney Kalilikane, who is studying Psychology at the University of Hawaii at Hilo, and 11-year member Dominique Laborte, who is transferring to Linfield College to pursue a degree in Sports Medicine and Athletic Training, each received $3,000 to help them complete their third year of college.

Finally, Kamalu Kaina, who is attending Menlo College for the third year, received his first $2,000 award to help him continue his studies of Mass Media Communications.

His mother, Amy, worked at Napili Kai Beach Resort for more than 25 years, and his father, Andrew, is an entertainer in the resort’s Sea House Restaurant.

All of the recipients are graduates of Lahainaluna High School.