December 1, 2023 | Source: Pacific Business News

G70’s collaborative approach to corporate giving

Hawaii-based design firm G70 has donated $200,000 to five local organizations through its Hope Grant, which the company debuted in April, to “create hope for Hawaii’s future generations,” according to Charles Kaneshiro, president and COO.

Kaneshiro told Pacific Business News that the idea for this new approach to corporate giving was “birthed during the Covid-19 pandemic.”

“We’d been through this before with other recessions, after 52 years in business,” he continued. “‘We’re going to weather this storm.”

Kaneshiro said G70 “stayed busy” during the pandemic as the company transitioned to work-from-home in March of 2020. “We still had work when a lot of other sectors weren’t as lucky.”

He sought ways to help the local community. “How do we learn from what happened during the pandemic to build resiliency, to grow stronger? What would $200,000 do?”

The G70 Hope Grant, in partnership with Hawaii Community Foundation, is funded by the company’s earnings and revenue, Kaneshiro said.

“Through this initiative, we hope to support projects that will leave a lasting impact on our community and inspire hope for many generations to come,” he added.

G70 announced the initiative earlier this year and received 33 nonprofit proposals detailing new ventures, programs and other expansions “that go beyond existing boundaries and bring about positive and lasting change in the community,” according to the company.

Five finalists were recently named after a selection committee within G70 judged grant proposals “based on their innovation, feasibility, and the potential for broad-reaching positive effects.”

Funding will be distributed by HCF in the following amounts:

  • Hoola Na Pua received $100,000 to support its integrated programming by providing health services to children who have been exploited by sex trafficking. G70’s Hope Grant will support the organization’s network of youth, community members, stakeholders and government statewide.
  • Mao Organic Farms received $50,000 to grow organic produce that provides sustainable careers. The grant will support the organization’s daily practice of aloha aina, or nurturing the connection with land.
  • Common Grace received $30,000 to continue providing mentorship to more than 3,000 children in Hawaii. The grant will support its partnerships between public schools, business, civic and faith-based communities.
  • The Pantry received $10,000 from G70’s Hope Grant in support of its mission to address Oahu’s hunger crisis by providing access to nutritional food.
  • Family Promise of Hawaii received $10,000 to support its mission of increasing equitable access to housing for vulnerable families.

An additional $2,000 honorarium will be donated to the Kauai Planning and Action Alliance, the company noted, “to support collaboration with diverse organizations for creative planning and action to achieve targeted community goals.”

“We were blessed by this process in many ways. In reflection, the hardest part was sending out 27 apology letters, unable to fund each proposal submitted,” Kaneshiro told PBN.

In addition to the G70 Hope Grant, the company supports the community through its foundation’s annual grant giving, scholarships and more.

Kaneshiro said “it’s still to be determined” if and when G70 might offer its Hope Grant again.

“These organizations are touching many facets of our community, addressing food insecurity, homelessness and keiki services, which tells us our needs as an island.

“One of G70’s core values is Aloha Kekahi i Kekahi, which means to love another,” he said. “We are all inherently connected. I’m confident other Hawaii businesses could adopt a similar giving model and I do hope this is an encouragement to them and our partners.”

Read the Article on Pacific Business News