In the fall of 2017 the Honolulu Community College children’s center, Keiki Hauʻoli, held an ‘Ōhana Work Day to spruce up the center’s outdoor environment. Families assisted in moving over 2,000 pounds of compost materials into the Keiki Hauʻoli Playground to create a Children’s Garden.
Lead preschool teacher, Mary Kelly, and parent, Vicky Rabago, constructed retaining walls out of rock, which became home to a rich medly of herbs, vegetables, fruit trees, and plants whose use is versatile.
The staff, children, and lab students use the garden’s produce in their weekly cooking activities.
It is not uncommon to see Aunty Mary and Aunty Vicky with keiki watering, planting, enjoying or just admiring the lush garden they created and maintain.
Through the growing and harvesting of produce, the Early Childhood Education program hopes the keiki will develop an understanding of mālama ʻāina (caring for the earth) and how it is connected to a healthy lifestyle.