Celebrate Music, Life and Giving Back at the Kokua Festival

By Andy Beth Miller


Who isn’t familiar with the gentle, feel-good acoustic tunes of Jack Johnson, one of Hawaiʻi’s most beloved local residents and musical talents? And on August 4 and 5, 2017, at the Waikiki Shell, Johnson will be gracing the stage with a handful of his highly talented friends to celebrate music, life and giving back at the Kokua Festival, a benefit concert for The Kokua Hawaii Foundation. 

Jack and Kim Johnson’s Way to Give Back

The Kokua Hawaii Foundation is a nonprofit that Johnson has helmed alongside his longtime wife, Kim, since its inception in 2003. The couple has the goal of spurring the hearts and minds of those who follow Jack’s music to now follow his lead in inspiring change, for good. The declared purpose of the nonprofit is specifically to support environmental education in the schools and communities of Hawaiʻi by offering students within the aloha state access to experiences that will increase their awareness and appreciation for the earth and our natural resources.

A Concert to Benefit Hawaii’s Children and the Aina

A rainbow greeted concertgoers in the afternoon during the 2008 Kokua Festival. Photo by Jamm Aquino.

Anyone who has heard Johnson’s “3 R’s” song lyrics, which encourage the youth (and adults) of our world to “Reduce, Reuse, Recycle,” won’t be surprised to hear that the foundation’s main belief is that it is the keiki (children) who will be the ones to sow the seeds of change and lead the charge in preserving our cherished ‘āina (lands). Kokua Hawaii’s programs include its ʻAINA In Schools (a farm to school initiative that focuses on literally connecting kids with their roots — of their local land), Plastic Free Hawaii (providing resources, tools and trainings to educate schools and the local community about the merits, and how to’s, of going plastic free) and 3R’s School Recycling Program (to engage and educate within the school community about the 3R’s of reducing, reusing and recycling).

Better Together

On top of these programs, Kokua Hawaii Foundation also sponsors numerous field trip grants and mini-grants, which are generously made available to Hawaiʻi schools state-wide because, as an organization, it believes that it’s never too early and one’s never too young, or too old, to start making this world a better place. After all, we really are “Better (when we’re all working) Together!”

For more information on Kokua Hawaii Foundation, and to discover how you can contribute to the cause, visit www.kokuahawaiifoundation.org or www.hawaii.com/event/jack-johnson-benefit-kokua-hawaii-foundation.

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