Feed The Hunger Foundation is just one of the many organizations Aloha United Way supports in an effort to help people live better lives and address critical problems in Hawaii. Through this partnership, the organizations are able to work together to help local farmers become more stable financially.
Aloha United Way chose Feed The Hunger Foundation to be one out of 10 members of a cohort that is looking to address financial instability in Hawaii.
“Feed The Hunger Foundation exists to alleviate hunger and poverty, so we support small food entrepreneurs in Hawaii’s food systems,” says Feed The Hunger Foundation CEO Patti Chang. “We make loans, we provide business expertise, and we network so that everyone in our community may have an opportunity.”
Feed The Hunger Foundation partnered with Waimanalo Market Co-op, a non-profit organization that supports farmers, kitchen vendors, and other artists by only selling locally-made products and locally-grown produce. When it first started, the market needed a lot of financial help.
“We believed in the founders, we believed in the board, and we made them their first loan that enabled them to open their doors,” Chang explains.
“Feed the Hunger Foundation really came in and gave us that financial stability,” says Azure Skellington, Waimanalo Market Co-op’s executive director. “Because of them, we’re able to help people in our community who may be impoverished and need supplemental income just to make ends meet .”
Aloha United Way has been bringing people together for 100 years. It believes in investing in organizations that are making a difference and aims to bring them together so they can make more of a difference collectively.
“One out of every two families in Hawaii is really struggling,” says Lisa Kimura with Aloha United Way. “It’s a very serious problem, and it’s something that Aloha United Way is doing along with 300 partner agencies to be able to make sure that all families in Hawaii are getting by, are healthy, and are sustainable in their efforts.”