A challenge to Live Aloha

Last April, Kanu Hawai’i hosted a one-month “Live Aloha in Your Neighborhood” campaign, asking people across the islands to begin the process of building stronger communities, one block at a time, drawing on our culture of aloha. They asked people to start with one action: Reach out to people “3 doors down” in both directions from the place you live, and get together in a backyard, garage, building lobby, local coffee shop, or other place within walking distance.

Only 57 people have taken up the challenge. I don’t know whether Kanu Hawaii is going to continue the “Live Aloha” challenge this year. But whether you make a pledge on their website or just make a simple decision, we can all make small choices to strengthen our communities.

* Be aware of our neighbors. Creating relationships with our neighbors provides a support system and community security that comes from caring about each other’s needs.

* Take care of our neighborhoods. As we look out for each other, it becomes easier to work together and build sustainable and environmentally friendly communities.

* Prepare our community together. Resilient and vibrant, our neighborhoods become the foundations of thriving local economies no longer dependent on trans-Pacific oil and food imports.

Another company that challenges us to “Live Pure Aloha” is Uncle Clay’s House of Pure Aloha, a Hawaiian treat shop in the Aina Haina Shopping Center that combines business with a social mission. Living the “Pure Aloha Way” embraces the core value of pure love, inner peace, self-discovery, truly believing, humility, and the continual pursuit of perfection.

For inspirational stories about aloha around the world, check out the 20th Annual Celebration of the Arts Festival on Maui this weekend, hosted at the Ritz-Carlton Kapalua. On Saturday, April 7, an international panel called “Aloha Lives in Distant Lands” will discuss how the concept of “aloha” is practiced in Tibet, Africa, Samoa, Native America, and Hawaii. If you attend the Festival, please come back and tell us about it!

Let’s all find small ways to “Live Aloha” wherever we are!

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