Every year, Hawaiian Mission Academy (HMA) Windward Campus and HMA Ka Lama Iki get together for a joint jog-a-thon fundraising event. These have always been fun days, with families helping to count laps and offer refreshments to the runners. However, this year the two schools held separate events due to COVID-19.
For Jog-a-thon 2021, HMA Windward decided to forego the usual running track venue in order to maintain family bubbles and limit exposure. Families met at the HMA Windward campus early Sunday morning on January 17 to warm up and stretch while spread out over the parking lot. This allowed students and families to enjoy camaraderie and school spirit at a safe distance.
Each family was provided with free apps to keep track of students’ distances. After Pastor Brennon Kirstein’s worship thought and prayer, families scattered to locations of their choice (neighborhoods, parks, running tracks, hiking trails, etc.) to run/walk/jog for two consecutive hours. They had until 6:00 p.m. to complete the event and submit the data from their apps, which showed their time and distance.
Since this event was new, the anticipation was that it wouldn’t raise as much as previous years, but participants are praising God for the $12,000 that was collected! Students were given incentives such as treats and prizes for donations collected. Everyone enjoyed the award ceremony, which recognized the top runners and top collectors.
Organizers received positive feedback from families on the way the event was executed despite the obvious obstacles, and they are thankful to be able to find ways to continue to encourage exercise, raise money, and promote school spirit.
By Hilda Scott
Traditionally, every January, Hawaiian Mission Academy (HMA) Ka Lama Iki holds a joint jog-a-thon fundraiser with its sister school HMA Windward. This year, however, due to safety regulations, they were forced to set off on their own. With so much uncertainty within this school year, the staff desperately wanted to bring some shade of “normal” back to the classroom.
As they discussed plans to hold the jog-a-thon in various places—Camp Waianae, the beach, their campus—they kept circling back to the same colorful idea: a color run! Better yet, since the campus doesn’t have space to run, they would jump! So, the students and teachers started jumping rope in preparation for Jump-a-thon 2021. The teachers were not confident that the school could reach the fundraising goal of $20,000 for the 2021-2022 Scholarship Fund, but they could at least focus on the health and fitness aspect of the event.
Early morning on Friday, April 23, as tents and water coolers were pulled from dusty closets, the jump-a-thon got underway. The day began with an inspiring outdoor chapel with local youth pastors and helpful interns, as keiki (children) and staff praised and worshipped God together. The exciting event was then kicked off with the color run—an opening lap around the school as students were ambushed and covered in multicolored cornstarch powder. As students dodged and ran, the staff were able to see those hidden smiles that they had missed so terribly.
The rest of the day was filled with all kinds of jumping at the different stations. From Double Dutch to helicopter to speed jumping, the students, volunteers, and teachers jumped their hearts out! They also could spend time at the “count station,” where they counted the jumps of the other participants for the fundraising portion of the event.
Looking back, there was no need for concern about the generosity of donors this year. Thanks to students, community, the church community, and even coaches, Ka Lama Iki not only exceeded the fundraising goal of $20,000, they surpassed it two weeks before the deadline. God continues to bless this school, despite all of the challenges faced this year. The staff and students of Ka Lama Iki encourage all of their sister schools to not lose faith—if God wants students at your school, they will come!
By Sarah Traczyk and Ashley Martin