Friday, July 23, 2010

More Great Things on Maui

Not to overshadow my post on Kupa'a Farms, but due to Vince Mina's determination and diligence, we are only a few weeks, days really from a very important conference that will capture some of the greatest representatives for all aspects of creating a sustainable farm and "lock" them down in a beautiful setting for a week to discuss and come up with answers on how Maui can be made more sustainable.
The County of Maui has backed this event with a grant and as many know the grants are never really enough, so if any angels or just people concerned with seeing a better Maui would like to help by donating money, it sure would put the pressure of of asking local suppliers for help in feeding people. They always come to the rescues, but it would be nice to compensate them occasionally. For more on this visit to get the overall store and how you might be able to fit into it.
Also we are hoping to have much of it virtually available on the web live. This way the select group can have input from Maui and the world.

Kupa'a Coffee Farms Takes "BEST COFFEE OF THE YEAR" Award!

It's been awhile since I have posted on this blog, in fact with just barely a sip or two of coffee after Maui Economic Opportunities 2 times a week for 2 months Business classes last night and work at 6am, I just hope I can finish this one.

I just read in the Maui Scene wear a friend and one of the last remaining "small farmers" left on the Maui County Farm Bureau has won for the second year the prestigious award of "THE BEST COFFEE OF THE YEAR" Awards held on the Big Island of Hawaii. The Second Annual Coffee Association's Statewide Cupping Competition held at the Sheraton Keahou Beach Resort, now there's someplace I haven't been to for quite awhile.

Gerry Ross and his partner Sydney Smith were ranked second ahead of all Kona Coffees in the State! Not bad since we are talking about one of the most prized coffees in the world and taking that honor for a second year.

Gerry is very active in teaching and out-reaching to the State and elsewhere on the possibilities behind growing Organic foods. especially Coffee in his case. He has attended many events and most of the Maui Aloha Aina Association Events, as well as taught classes at the college on Maui. Not bad for someone living on another island with few flight times available and the expenses behind traveling.

Gerry and Sydney's Farm "Kupa'a" come from the Hawaiian terms "firm" or "solid." So they have taken a rocky barren piece of land and not only turned it into a thriving Organic Farm, but done it with a dry, rocky soil.

Congradulations Kupa'a Farms and Especially Jerry and Sydney on your Award!

Sunday, July 11, 2010

Prison Going Ahead on Maui

There is no doubt that the prison system is old and in need of repairs and I am sure would help property values in Wailuku if it was relocated, but it sure is a lot of money considering the amount of money being taken from programs that keep people from becoming prisoners in the first place.

My grand children are exposed to as many as four or five generations, they multiply early and fast, of other children that were raised in the atmosphere of drugs and alcohol. Add that to either the jobless rate, low economy or many children that don't even see their parents because of the parents having to work so many jobs just to make ends meet. Grand Parents that either end up trying to raise the children or end up working well into their 70's to support their unemployed, drug addicted children and their children and it's no wonder we have a growing population of prisoners.

So once again we attack the symptoms instead of the problems. I grew up in the 70's and half the people I grew up with are either dead or locked up from drugs, alcohol or the stupid choices they made while under the influence.

Let's see how much money we can put towards the children, education and keeping them educated enough to make healthy choices. Unfortunately, they come from over worked teachers in crowded classes and home to over work and often single parent families, where they are expected to do home work, bath, eat and go to bed all within a couple hours time. Most parents cannot pick up children until after work and barely before the after school program ends.

The time that there are no programs available create financial and emotional hardships on both parents and kids. But as long as we continue to ignore the root of the problem, then we will need to continue to put money into new jails and the justice system itself.

Maui needs to be more of a community and stop turning a blind eye to people and relative that are using meth and other hard drugs and alcohol. Get involved and pay attention to the home down the street that has visitor day and night that arrive for a few minutes while someone is waiting in the car and then leave again. If there was a sign of drug activity going on that surely is one.

It might pay the bills or allow for fancy cars and big houses, but in the end society will pay the price when entire generations don't know what is a normal life.

Just as we are putting energy into sustainable food, water and energy. How about some money dedicated to sustainable families and children?