A Path to Recovery: The One ‘Ohana Initiative

Posted on Nov 30, 2023 in Featured, Latest Department News, Main, Newsroom, Office of the Governor Press Releases

Governor Josh Green, M.D., announced the One ‘Ohana Initiative on November 8, providing a collective path forward to Hawai‘i’s recovery following the deva­stating Maui wildfires. The initiative will proactively provide financial support to those who lost loved ones and suffered serious injuries due to the wildfires. It will also advance efforts to promote Hawai‘i’s recovery, in a manner that best serves the people of Maui and all of Hawai‘i. The focus is to rebuild Lahaina in a manner that embodies Hawai‘i values and traditions.

The One ‘Ohana Initiative is comprised of multiple recovery programs the state has initiated, or which have been launched as part of numerous efforts to benefit the entire state. These include the $100M Maui Relief TANF Program; the updated siren policy by the Hawai‘i Emergency Management Agency; Hawaiian Electric’s wildfire safety strategy, and many others.

As part of the One ‘Ohana Initiative, Governor Green introduced the Maui Recovery Fund which will exceed $150 million and distribute money to families of those who lost loved ones, and to those who suffered severe injuries in the Maui wildfires. This fund is supported by partners like the state of Hawai‘i, Hawaiian Electric Co., Kamehameha Schools (KS), and Maui County. Additio­nal organizations are anticipated to join in this healing effort. The fund will provide substantial monetary sums to victims much faster than they could receive through litigation. Those who choose to receive money from the fund will waive their ability to bring legal action related to associated claims.

“I have been talking about this fund for the last three months and I am beyond grateful to be able to formally announce initial details today,” Governor Green said. “This fund is made possible by the state and multiple partners who are committed to seeing our Maui community and our whole state, heal from the most devastating disaster most of us will ever see. When we all join as one, we can diminish suffering,” the Governor said.

“Our hope is that those families who choose to engage in this process can find a healing path to closure,” said Maui County Mayor Richard Bissen.

Beneficiaries who voluntarily opt in to the program will receive payments of more than $1M as early as the second quarter of next year after an administrator is sel­ected and a protocol is finalized.