HONOLULU, HAWAII – As President Barack Obama hosts a meeting this week on Oahu for Asia-Pacific leaders, the Office of Hawaiian Affairs has been playing a visible, behind-the-scenes role in helping the state prepare for the priceless attention that the international conference will bring.
OHA has contributed $250,000 to the Asia-Pacific Economic Cooperation conference being held, Nov. 7-13, at the Hawaii Convention Center, where more than 20,000 delegates and media will put Honolulu on the world stage and are expected to bring in millions in revenue to the state.
Funds from OHA went largely to providing hospitality and cultural training for more than 1,000 APEC volunteers. Their attendance was mandatory for a series of intense, eight-hour sessions. These training sessions in classrooms at community colleges as well as the University of Hawaii were on Hawaiian language, cultural beliefs and the Aloha spirit.
OHA funds also covered expenses for creating an aura of Native Hawaiian culture around the APEC meetings.
“OHA is proud to be a co-host to leaders of more than 20 Asia-Pacific member economies,” said OHA Chairperson Colette Machado. “It’s our hope that this opportunity will provide us with an international stage to bring global attention to the rich history and culture of Native Hawaiian people.”
Submitted by OHA