Hawaii Tourism Authority will award funding to 34 Aloha Aina programs in 2020, a more than 20% increase from last year that emphasizes the state agency’s greater commitment to tourism management.
HTA’s Aloha Aina program, which is funded through lodging taxes, is designed to assist community-based nonprofit and government programs with efforts to manage and protect Hawaii’s natural resources. Some of the statewide initiatives address rapid Ohia death, support for Hawaii Youth Conservation Corps and a cultural and ecological restoration program run by the Hawaiian Islands Land Trust.
Kalani Ka‘ana‘ana, HTA director of Hawaiian cultural affairs, said the collective objective of the Aloha Aina program is “to reinvest tourism dollars to manage, conserve and revitalize Hawaii’s natural resources.”
In addition to Aloha Aina, HTA is funding 95 community enrichment programs this coming year and also will support cultural perpetuation efforts through the soon-to-be announced recipients of the Kukulu Ola program.