Are you looking for ways to contribute to the preservation of Hawaii's valuable natural resources and cultural heritage? The Hawaiian Islands Land Trust (HILT) is an accredited state land trust dedicated to protecting Hawaii's precious lands. Whether you're interested in making a donation, becoming a member, or volunteering your time, there are several ways to support the Hawaiian Islands Land Trust. Ke Ao Hāli'i is a 501c3 nonprofit organization and donations are tax-deductible. You can visit savehanacoast.org to contribute to general land management or specifically to the endowment fund.
Donors can also set up a donor-advised fund, which is like a savings account for a charity, and recommend how much and how often money is awarded to the Hawai'i Land Trust and other qualified charities. The Kauai Public Land Trust, the Oahu Land Trust, the Maui Coastal Land Trust, and the Hawaii Islands Land Trust have merged to form the Islands Land Trust. Memberships and donations are critical to helping the Hawaiian Islands Land Trust continue its essential work across the islands. A traditional native tree planted in your honor (or in honor of the person you designate) at the Waihe'e wetland and coastal dune refuge, the largest HILT public reserve in Maui, is another way to show your support. Today, the Land Trust protects more than 17,000 acres of land in the Hawaiian Islands through a variety of conservation and land ownership easements. The group's efforts focused on the coastal dune and wetland refuge of Waihe'e, a 277-acre land reserve located on the north coast of Maui.
Before Hawaiian Islands Land Trust acquired ownership of the land in 2004, Waihe'e planned to become a destination golf resort. In recent years, Hawaii Islands Land Trust staff have documented the residence of eight different endangered species, including native Hawaiian birds, such as the ae'o (stilt), the alae ke'oke'o (coot), the koloa (duck) and the nene (goose). Partnering with HILT allows you to invest in preserving Hawaii's open spaces for generations to come. In some cases, such as the Waihe'e refuge, the Hawaiian Islands Land Trust owns the land and has implemented long-term restoration projects. Apolitical in nature, the Hawaii Islands Land Trust works with private landowners, community groups, community leaders, and government partners to protect Hawaii's precious lands. If you're in Maui, consider joining the Hawaiian Islands Land Trust's weekly workday, held every Friday at the Waihe'e Wetland and Coastal Dune Shelter from 8:00 to 12:00.
The Hawaii Islands Land Trust also provides resources and support to landowners to integrate conservation into their land use plans in perpetuity. Supporting this program allows Hawaiian Islands Land Trust to continue connecting people to the land through educational and enriching activities. Anyone wishing to contribute can visit savehanacoast.org or become a member or make a donation to the Hawaiian Islands Land Trust.