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‘Vision for Pohakea’ receives prize

The Maui Nui Marine Resource Council team takes a break from monitoring the oysters at Maalaea Bay to display their award from the 2020 Hogan/American Savings Bank Nonprofit Business Plan Competition. From left to right: Grace Silver, project and research coordinator; Amy Hodges, programs and operations manager; and Meredith Beeson, project and research coordinator. — Maui Nui Marine Resource Council photo

The nonprofit Maui Nui Marine Resource Council was recently awarded a $3,000 prize in the 2020 Hogan/American Savings Bank Nonprofit Business Plan Competition for its business plan, “Vision for Pohakea.”

The goal of the plan is to reduce sediment and pollutants in Maalaea Bay and Maalaea Harbor, said Amy Hodges, programs and operations manager at Maui Nui Marine Resource Council.

Pohakea is the name of the more than 4,000-acre watershed upslope from Maalaea Bay that has several gulches that all discharge into Maalaea Bay and the harbor.

The resource council’s business plan was one of eight plans selected as finalists out of more than 40 other Hawai’i nonprofit business plans submitted.

The council was awarded fourth place overall and a $3,000 prize, which it will use to help fund the “Vision for Pohakea” plan, including the installation of caged oysters in Maalea Bay that filter the water. The second part of the project takes place in the Pohakea watershed.

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