ʻOhana thankful for annual imu


Photo by Analicia Kapua

Rafael Adolpho helps with Kamehameha Mauiʻs annual Thanksgiving imu, Wednesday, Nov. 22. Staff are invited to bring anything from turkeys to ham and potatoes to be cooked overnight in the schoolʻs imu by volunteer staff, students and community members.

Every year Kamehameha Schools Maui hosts a Thanksgiving imu for their ʻohana, and staff from all around the island drop off and pick up turkeys and other foods that are cooked in it.

With the school’s support, many dedicated volunteers turn out to help. Every volunteer has a special connection to the imu.

“When we look at Thanksgiving, we give praises to God. We’re thankful for all the blessings we have,” Uncle Pōmaikai Kaniaupio-Crozier said. “It’s a time for everybody to come and not just be happy…but to give thanksgiving to Ke Akua and allow us to share in that fellowship of thanksgiving.” he said.

Senior Tyson Haupu has volunteered for two years at the Thanksgiving imu. This year the experience of prepping the imu was familiar to him because he had helped with the imu when he was a sophomore. Being that it is his last year as a student, he returned to volunteering his to give back.

“It was nice for me when I handed out the turkeys to see how happy everybody was…” Tyson Haupu said. “Being able to give the families that are not as fortunate, being able to see their smiles was rewarding.”

In addition to the school staffʻs food that is cooked in the imu, Kahu Kalani Wong coordinates donations of imu-made Thanksgiving dinners and food baskets to specially selected families.

“It is for us as a KS ʻohana to come together and give back to not only the community, but to our teachers.”