Hawai'i Learning Tour

Hawai'i Learning Tour: November 16 -19, 2015

Registration: CLOSED

In the popular imagination, Hawai'i is thought of as a tropical paradise, but it is also a state that is struggling to overcome centuries of colonialism, environmental degradation and displacement of its Native communities. What can we learn from Hawai'i’s unique history, culture and geopolitical location and how communities there are overcoming challenges to forge equitable economic opportunities for its diverse residents? What are the attributes of Hawai‘i that serve as a model for building community resilience?  How does our thinking about race and immigration change within a Native/indigenous context? What is the impact of tourism as the primary economic driver in a state’s economy?

Come join your colleagues for an interactive 4-day learning tour of O'ahu, Hawai'i, to learn about innovative approaches towards creating economic and environmental sustainability, foster increased philanthropic attention to Hawai'i, and create opportunities that fulfill donor goals and community needs. Topics will include immigration, improving conditions for low wage workers, building successful labor-community partnerships, culturally-based community development and creating educational and economic opportunities for young people. The role of Native communities, gender and racial justice issues will be integrated throughout our sessions.  



We have planned an exciting and active three days in and around Honolulu, where participants will get a chance to meet with Hawai'i residents who are coming together to organize, advocacy and work to improve the lives of the most marginalized.  

  • Begin with an immersion into Hawaii’s unique history and culture, starting with a customized tour of historic ʻIolani
    Palace, home of Hawai'i’s monarchs.  Learn about how this independent monarchy was illegally overthrown in 1893, leading to Hawai'i’s annexation and eventual statehood. 
  • Learn about the true meaning of Aloha and Kuleana— an inter-connected web of caring and responsibility that encompasses family, community and environment. 
  • Visit with Kōkua Kalihi Valleyʻs Hoʻoulu ʻĀina, a multi-faceted community development organization that is re-claiming land and culture by using traditional agricultural practices to train a new generation of young people to be active citizens and stewards.   Weather permitting, we will get a chance to engage in some gardening and cultural practice. 
  • Travel to Waiʻanae, on Oʻahuʻs Western shore and home to a large community of Native Hawaiians and Pacific Islanders who are grappling with many challenges to become a more thriving and resilient community. 
  • Tour Hawaiʻi Plantation Village which depicts Hawai'i’s diverse and unique immigrant experience and learn about current immigration issues affecting Hawai'i today. 
  • Experience a side of Waikīkī not usually seen by tourists with a tour of hotels led by unionized hotel workers who are striving for better wages and work conditions for workers in Hawaii’s booming tourism industry. 
  • Gain a deeper understanding of the political landscape and opportunities possible in Hawaii around achieving equity for workers, immigrants, young people and Native Hawaiians. 

Hotel Accommodations 

We have reserved a room block at the Ala Moana Hotel in O'ahu.

Ala Moana Hotel - Honolulu

410 Atkinson Drive

Honolulu, Hawai'i 96814

Ph: 808-955-4811


For further information, please contact Valeria Velazquez, Program Manager for NFG's Working Group on Labor and Community Partnerships: valeria@nfg.org.

Co-sponsored by NFG’s Working Group on Labor & Community partnerships, Native Americans in Philanthropy, Asian Americans/Pacific Islanders in Philanthropy (AAPIP).

Planning Committee Organizations include Hill-Snowdon Foundation, Ms. Foundation, Unbound Philanthropy, and Hawai‘i People’s Fund.




Will you come? Enter the number of tickets you would like to purchase.

$250.00 Hawai'i Learning Tour Ticket