2013-2016 State Plan

Hawai‘i State Plan pdf version


Community service and volunteerism are integral parts of our diverse and rich cultural ethnicities.   Hawai’i’s social and economic challenges require innovative and comprehensive planning, coupled with collaboration among various partners and stakeholders.

The Hawai’i Commission’s role is to identify, foster, and create opportunities to promote volunteerism throughout our state.  The Commission works closely with the nationwide Corporation for National and Community Service (CNCS) and is the liaison between CNCS and the State of Hawai’i. The Hawai’i Commission is the only way for Hawai’i to receive federal funds dispersed by the Corporation for National and Community Service (CNCS).

The Hawaii Commission is administratively attached to the University of Hawaii, via the Vice President of Student Affairs.  The Commissioners are appointed by the Governor and confirmed by the state Senate.  Commissioners must represent various cross sections of our population as identified by CNCS.  There are 15 to 25 commissioners on the Hawai’i Commission.

This State Service Plan is a three (3) year blueprint to foster and guide community service in our state.  It shall be evaluated every three years and assessed annually.


CNCS has identified as part of the current strategic plan, six priority areas in which to demonstrate community impact across all programs.  These are:

  • Disaster Services,
  • Economic Opportunity,
  • Education,
  • Environmental Stewardship,
  • Healthy Futures, and
  • Veterans and Military Families.

Investments or grants will focus on achieving a specific set of outcomes in these areas.

Hawai’i’s portfolio currently has grantees that are included in these focus areas.  The Commission will continue to be consistent with CNCS in fostering and nurturing programs that are in these focus areas.

The Commission intends to update its public service awareness aspects by utilizing the following theme, “Serve Hawai’i with Aloha”.  This theme is to utilize the cultural uniqueness of the meaning of “Aloha”, so that members who serve will learn to appreciate the meaning of “Aloha”.


The Hawai’i Commission’s goal is to foster volunteerism and community service throughout Hawai’i, and is guided by the following principles:

  • Manuwahi (to give freely),
  • Kokua (to support, give, assist),
  • Laulima (to work cooperatively),
  • Lokahi (to strive for unity, harmony) and to
  • “Serve Hawaii with Aloha”.



The following section is a breakdown of steps and goals needed to execute this plan.  The understanding is that many of these steps and goals may be operating individually or simultaneous with each other.

Goal 1:  Enrich Hawaii’s AmeriCorps portfolio to continue to offer service as a solution to pressing community needs and expand the breadth and depth of the programs.

Objective:  By the end of 2015, the portfolio will include new programs as well as continuing programs.

The Commission will develop and implement an outreach plan, which will provide pertinent information to appropriate organizations across the state.

Year 1:  Outreach will include:

  • targeted meetings with staff from identified organizations which reflect work in the priority areas,
  • presentations on AmeriCorps, and the best fit for organizations,
  • other national service programs:  i.e. National Programs, Senior Corps and VISTA to ensure that national service resources are deployed across the state, and
  • identified Hawaii state and county agencies to educate them of potential opportunities provided through Americorps.

Objective:  By the end of 2015, the grantees of the Hawai’i Commission will be compliant, with strong and viable interventions, and will compete successfully on the national stage.

The Commission will continue to strengthen the training plan to build the capacity of grantee staff.

Year 1:  Ensure that:

  • each grantee’s program reflects a strong theory of change and is grounded on evidence based interventions, and
  • all new grantee staff receive orientation, training, and coaching for successful program development and management.

Goal 2:  Increase statewide involvement in “National Days of Service”.

Objective:  By 2015, 50% more activities will be planned throughout the state to commemorate the “National Days of Service”:  Martin Luther King Day; 9/11 Day of Remembrance, Make a Difference Day, and Americorps Week.

Year 1:  All AmeriCorps programs will:

  • participate in planning and implementing activities in their local areas, and
  • include other national service participants in the planning and implementation.

Objective:  Organizations participating in the “National Days of Service” will see this as ongoing work and will build onto their collaborations and year-long efforts.

Year 1:  Develop a communication system through which all participants can share activities, what occurred, successes, and recommendations.

Goal 3:  Increase awareness throughout the state of the role and contributions of Hawai’i Commission for National and Community Service.

Objective:  by 2015, an effective communications plan will be implemented to increase the awareness of the impact of the Commission.

Year 1:  Develop and begin to implement the plan which will include every program reporting on impact: a regular report from the Commission on actions and impact.  Examples of this are:

Develop and begin to implement a media campaign that may include:

  •  public service announcement (PSA) development,
  • web site upgrades,
  • newsletter development, and
  • video creations to “tell the right stories”,
  • or any and all aspects of a comprehensive media campaign to strengthen communication about Americorps and Commission activities.

Develop specific “branding” for Hawaii programs, such as “Americorps Hawaii”, and “Serve Hawaii with Aloha”.

Develop and implement a legislative outreach plan.  Examples of this might be:

  • Invite national, state and local leaders to attend state wide training sessions to share their service perspectives and ideas to members .
  • Invite national, state and local leaders to visit and interact with various programs throughout the state.
  • Network with other state programs to collaborate on training and information regarding volunteerism or community service.

Develop and support a Hawai’i Americorps alumni association or group.  Members of this group can provide invaluable experiences, guidance and mentoring and could be a helpful tool in recruiting or retaining members.

Develop a database of potential volunteers who could be referred to various programs for placement.  Many members contact the Commission website or staff for help and assistance in getting placed in a “Hawaii” program.  Creating this resource will be helpful in providing programs with a source of available members.

Goal 4:  Increase training and support for Commission staff.

Objective:  By 2015, streamline and reorganize staff responsibilities and duties.  To accomplish this, staff needs to be trained in many different subjects.  Some examples of the additional training required are:

  • Fiscal training and monitoring
  • Interview refinements
  • Human resource training
  • Customer service skill enhancement

Year 1:  Have staff complete transition to utilizing On Corps reporting system.   Provide localized training for the fiscal and monitoring refinements identified.  Provide training for human resource and customer service skills.

Goal 5:  Disability inclusion focus and support for Hawai’i programs

Objective:  By 2015, increase awareness and inclusion for people with disabilities into Americorps programs in Hawai’i.

Year 1:  Adopt Hawai’i Disability Inclusion Plan, and prioritize goals for next three years.   Educate programs of inclusion principles, opportunities and needs to make programs more accessible for people with disabilities.


The Hawai’i Commission has evolved and grown over the past 19 years.  The Commission is committed to having more programs compete successfully on the national level, and hopes to raise the awareness level of community service and volunteerism throughout Hawai’i by giving freely, working cooperatively, and striving for unity and harmony.  Let us all, “Serve Hawai’i with Aloha”!