The Kai Makana New York 2001 Aloha for Liberty Paddle was held June 22-23, 2001. This paddle was the first of two 2001 Aloha Adventure Paddles, the second being the Tahiti trip in October 10-20, 2001. The Aloha for Liberty Paddle was a symbolic activity held as part of the United Nations’ International Year of the Volunteer festivities in New York City.
Kai Makana volunteers are ordinary people inspired into action by founder Donna Kahiwaokawailani “Kahiwa” Kahakui’s historic paddling journeys. They share her concern about and dedication to the ocean. The purpose of the New York paddle was to raise awareness about the ocean through national media as well as to share the mission and vision of Kai Makana with the world. The New York 2001 paddle validated Kai Makana as a legitimate ocean awareness foundation. It also helped expand the level of awareness from that of an island community to one from national and global perspective. The paddle definitely confirmed our goal to instill action of ocean stewardship throughout the world.
Paddle Course and Aloha Ceremony
The Kai Makana Aloha for Liberty Paddle involved a 55-nautical-mile solo paddle by Kahiwa on her one-man canoe on the Hudson River. On the morning of June 22, 2001 Kahiwa launched her canoe from West Point Academy, paddled down the Hudson River and made her first stop in Tarrytown for the night. On June 23, Kahiwa left Tarrytown in the morning, circled the Statue of Liberty then proceeded up to Pier 63 in lower Manhattan. There, representatives from the National Park Service and other dignitaries greeted her and celebrated in an Aloha Ceremony. Kahiwa was received by New York volunteers, East Coast Hawaiian groups, Kamehameha Alumni Association members, canoe clubs, environmental groups, and the general public at the Pier 63 finish.
Kai Makana partnered with the National Park Service and several groups that collectively honor volunteerism, international friendship, and indigenous peoples committed to the protection, preservation and stewardship our marine life and ocean environment. Kai Makana received welcome invitations from West Point Academy officials, the New York Committee for the International Year of the Volunteer, the National Park Service, as well as the New York City Mayor’s Voluntary Action Center.
In addition, Kai Makana made connections with schools and community groups in the New York area. Together they will share ideas about creating future partnerships and leadership programs in order to promote ocean stewardship.
[New York Paddling Photos]
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