The Crisis in Maui: How to Help

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With the Maui wildfire death toll at 115, dozens still missing and thousands now homeless, groups – including many from the meetings industry – have stepped up fundraising efforts to get needed assistance to the affected areas.

Hospitality professional and Lahaina native Gigi Cabrera, for one, has started Lahaina Relief Efforts, with scores of other industry partners following suit. As Cabrera notes, funds are heading directly to those affected by the tragedy, providing for the distribution of food, water and other essential supplies.

June Pagdilao, DoS at the Maui Visitors & Convention Bureau, lost his home and everything but the shirt he was wearing. Luckily his wife and grown children are unharmed, but some other family members were not that fortunate. Here is a fund to help this family directly:

A number of the SongDivision team are based in Maui, including Marsha Sharpe, who is also a Maui Food Bank board member and has been volunteering her time since the fires started. In a recent interview, she emphasized the need for continued support and donations to maintain the level of help needed to recover from these devastating events. To find out how you can help them, visit:

Differing sectors of Hawaii have sprung into action to collect relief funds, including the state’s fabled surf industry. “The impact on thousands of lives has been significant, and the road to rebuilding their homes and livelihoods will undoubtedly be arduous and lengthy,” says a spokesperson for the Surf Industry Members Association (SIMA), which has started its own relief campaign, the SIMA Humanitarian Fund.

Meanwhile the Assistance Center at the Hawaii Convention Center has been relocated to the Keehi Lagoon Memorial at 2685 N. Nimitz Highway in Honolulu. Operated in partnership with the American Red Cross to support those evacuated from Maui due to the wildfires, the Assistance Center has served nearly 300 evacuees since the facility opened on Aug. 9. The American Red Cross will continue to offer these same services to Maui evacuees at Keehi Lagoon Memorial.

Here are some organizations accepting donations for Maui residents and rebuilding:

American Red Cross Hawaii

Council for Native Hawaiian Advancement

Hawaii Community Foundation Maui Strong fund

Hawai’i Restaurant Association

Lahaina Relief Efforts

Maritz/American Red Cross

Maui Food Bank

Maui United Way

Maui Humane Society

Public Schools of Hawaii Foundation

Salvation Army Hawaii

World Central Kitchen

For updates, visit For updates, visit and

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