Hometown Heroes: Companies come together to support keiki through COVID-19

  • Poi Dog Deli has been providing free keiki meals since March 2020. (Courtesy Photo/Special to West Hawaii Today)

  • Poi Dog Deli owners Taylor and Celeste Cline have been providing free keiki meals since March.

  • Local companies throughout the Big Island have announced their partnership with Keiki Heroes, a community empowerment initiative focused on promoting health and resilience for Hawaii’s children. (Courtesy photos/Special to West Hawaii Today)

Editor’s note: Each Wednesday, West Hawaii Today is publishing a story about individuals, groups or organizations that have helped make life better for others in our community during the COVID-19 pandemic.

Local companies throughout the Big Island have announced their partnership with Keiki Heroes, a community empowerment initiative focused on promoting health and resilience for Hawaii’s children.


As Keiki Heroes Partners, these companies are directly helping island keiki commit to healthy habits and social well-being.

As a part of the partnership, local businesses are offering incentives for kids who show their Keiki Hero Cards, indicating they’ve taken the Keiki Hero pledge to uphold safe habits during the pandemic; business partner employees support volunteer efforts and Keiki Heroes materials distribution as well as offer in-kind support to help the nonprofit effort advance its mission.

“Keiki Heroes was born as a volunteer effort from folks across the business, nonprofit, education and health care spaces, and Suisan has been proud to serve as a partner in that effort,” said Renae Akau, Suisan HR Manager and member of the Keiki Heroes leadership team. “If we can play a role in encouraging keiki to keep up healthy practices and help our community weather the pandemic, we’re happy to do it.”

Keiki Heroes Partners include Aloha Theatre, Canada-France-Hawaii Telescope, Creative Arts Hawaii, CU Hawaii Federal Credit Union, Engineering Partners, Hawaii Science and Technology Museum, Hawaiian Electric Company, HPM Building Supply, KTA Super Stores, Lex Brodie’s Tires, Poi Dog Deli, The Success Factory/Nextech, Suisan Company Ltd., and Waiakea Hawaiian Volcanic Water.

Keiki Heroes Partners are businesses or organizations united by the 3P Pledge:

• Practice​ COVID safety and responsibility in their business/organization and community.

• Promote​ keiki COVID safety and awareness in their business/organization, with employees, and in the community.

• Provide​ Keiki Heroes with incentives to motivate or support them to take the Keiki Heroes Pledge.

As participants in the partnership program, Keiki Heroes Partners have access to a variety of resources that can be shared with the business/organization to promote COVID safety, recognition on the Keiki Heroes website and social media, as well as signage that can be displayed in the business or organization that signifies support of the program.

Some of the incentives for Keiki Hero card holders launching this month include:

• Free Keiki Heroes merchandise at Poi Dog Deli in Kailua-Kona

• $2 off a poke bowl or plate and a free bottle of Waiakea water at Suisan Fish Market in Hilo

• Free Keiki Heroes stickers and buttons at CU Hawaii Federal Credit Union (Hilo Main Branch-Only)

For more information, visit www.keikiheroes.org/giveaways.


Keiki Heroes welcome local businesses to join as partners in this effort. Interested companies are invited to visit ​www.keikiheroes.org/partners​ to take the Business Partner 3P pledge and get involved.

Know a Hometown Hero that should be highlighted next Wednesday? It can be anybody, from a youngster doing good for the community, to a professional helping with the COVID-19 pandemic, or even a kupuna! Please send your nominations to cjensen@westhawaiitoday.com with the subject: Hometown Heroes Nomination. Please include the hero’s name, contact information and what makes them a hero.

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