THREE FAVORITE HIGHLIGHTS FROM THREE RECENT PROJECTS (3X3)
01 year of the limu
The Limu Hui successfully advocated to declare 2022 the Year of the Limu -- bringing greater public attention to the importance of these important native seaweed species to our ecosystems, economy, culture, diet and way of life in Hawaiʻi.
I helped to co-found the Limu Hui in 2013, as part of an Audubon Society fellowship project (TogetherGreen). Together with Uncle Wally Ito and Uncle Henry Chang-Wo, we at KUA gathered 30 limu loea (master practitioners, primarily elders) from communities across Hawaiʻi to document traditional ecological knowledge of seaweeds (limu) in Hawaiʻi. Today, the Limu Hui has grown into a strong inter-generational network, advocating for the perpetuation of limu and limu culture. I continue to be a part, and in deep gratitude to everyone in this Hui for pushing me to keep learning and growing in my practice.
Limu Hui on Mongabay (environmental science and conservation news platform)
02 kūlana noiʻi
With the leadership of Dr. Rosie Alegado and Katy Hinzten of UH Sea Grant, Brenda Asuncion and myself of KUA were part of a collaboration to develop a framework of research standards -- kūlana noiʻi -- for promoting more equitable, generative partnerships between academic researchers and community practitioners. Today, training in and application of the Kūlana Noiʻi is a requirement for receiving UH Sea Grant research funds.
In 2021, we collaborated with Daniela Bottjer-Wilson to write a chapter on Kūlana Noi'i for the soon-to-be released book IGNITE: A Justice-Forward Approach to Decolonizing Higher Education through Space, Place, and Culture (edited by Laura M. Pipe & Jennifer T. Stephens).
I was introduced to the concept of sabbaticals for Executive Directors and workers of all kinds, by Kevin Pujanauski of Social Movement Technologies. I spent nearly a year researching the concept, and in April 2021 embarked upon my own nine-month sabbatical. I am ever-changed because. I could never have taken this step without fierce community--I sit in deep gratitude to the many people who loved me, cheered me on and made the way.
There is a growing movement for the necessity of rest: "Change starts with shifting the narrative that rest is earned or deserved. Rest is essential, as essential as food, yet within racist, patriarchal, and capitalistic systems, the exhaustion of BIPOC executive directors has been the status quo." - BIPOC Ed Coalition
photo: Margaret Peebles