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Liliʻuokalani Trust Brings Youth-Centric Programs to Upcountry Maui

Liliʻuokalani Trust Brings Kamaliʻi-Centric Programs to Upcountry Maui


In 2018, Liliʻuokalani Trust acquired a two-story, 4,302-square-foot building in Pukalani, Maui, which underwent renovations during the pandemic. The name of the building: LT Pukalani.

Today — more than one year after the Trust blessed and opened the building in the summer of 2023 — LT Pukalani has evolved into a vibrant gathering space for youth ages 12 to 18.

Inside are remodeled rooms, a loft, and brand-new amenities for youth programs and services. They include:  

Additionally, the living room features lofty ceilings and wooden beams, providing a cozy space where kamaliʻi can lounge on bean bag chairs.


Programs at LT Pukalani are led by Moēlani Foster, a Youth Development Specialist for the Trust. Foster grew up in upcountry Maui and is dedicated to inspiring the next generation of kamaliʻi.

Assisting her is Hileka Lyons, an LT Teammate and Program Associate who once received support from the Trust as a young parent herself. Together, Foster and Lyons bring a wealth of experience and commitment to nurturing youth. 

Kalo-nary classes (using kalo as an ingredient) at LT Pukalani are led by LeRoy “Uncle Braddah” Hokoana, an LT Teammate who serves as the Facilities Maintenance Technician for Kīpuka Maui. He enthusiastically shares his family recipes, such as his mother’s chicken luau and his wife’s ʻono poi mochi, among other tasty recipes rooted in kalo.


Earlier this year, LT Pukalani collaborated with Aloha Missions to introduce the kamaliʻi to ʻāina activities, such as planting 40 native species outside the building. Now growing among the thriving plants is the beautiful pua kalaunu (crown flower), a favorite of Queen Liliʻuokalani.

The LT Teammates are optimistic that programs at LT Pukalani will lead to thriving, successful youth in upcountry Maui, thus perpetuating the legacy of the Queen, who established her trust in 1909 for the benefit of Hawaiian children.

The Team has created an exciting array of summer activities centered around the concept, Wahi Pana ʻO Haleakalā (legendary places of Haleakalā).

Throughout the four-week sessions, the kamaliʻi will have opportunities to meet Native Hawaiians from their community, who have built careers celebrating Hawaiian culture. Many are successful entrepreneurs in ranching, fashion, design, hospitality, and the wedding industry.   

The hope is for the kamaliʻi to cultivate pride in their heritage, embrace Hawaiian culture, cherish their ʻāina, and feel connected to the Queen’s legacy.

At LT Pukalani, Foster and her Team hope to inspire the kamaliʻi who can learn that “great people come from their ʻāina and, just like our Queen, they, too, can overcome adversity and leave an impactful and enduring legacy for generations to come.”