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Systems Mapping

Native Hawaiian Poverty 

Native Hawaiian Poverty Presentation

What is a systems map?

A systems map is a collection of identified strengths and weaknesses that are used to create story loops that are connected to one another by a “core story.” The purpose of the map is to help illuminate patterns in a system that can help unlock change and create a healthier system. A more detailed explanation of a systems map is available here.

How is the map organized?

The systems map is divided into 7 different areas 

  • The Core Story (a special kind of story loop)
  • Negative Forces (4)
    • Limited Choices
    • Disempowerement
    • Exploitation
    • Unaccoutability
  • Positive Forces (2)
    • Cultural Identify
    • Strong Community

The version of the map presented here is made up of 48 separate story loops. 

Why should I learn about the systems map?

Learning about the map can be a daunting task, so if you feel overwhelmed this is a normal feeling. The value that the map lies in the unique perspective it provides due to the diverse group of contributors and their perspectives. By examining the systems map we can identify leverage points and begin to understand how we can work together as organizations, individuals, institutions, and communities to make the changes that will help our kamaliʻi to thrive. LT has identified four leverage points within the systems map that we apply when working with are kamaliʻi which include healing trauma, strengthening ʻohana, connecting kūpuna to keiki, and strengthening community.

What is a leverage point?

A leverage point is a place in the system that has great potential for positive change in the system with a modest amount of effort.

What has been done with the systems map?

The systems map has been used to inform our strategic plan “Wehe Ke Ala” and has informed our programs and services as well. In addition we have collaborated with the Thompson School of Social Work and Public Health to publish a report based on the systems map which can be reviewed here

Important things to remember about the systems map

An understanding of Native Hawaiian Wellbeing is important when approaching this work

The work is complex and requires collaboration

The map is a living document


If you have questions about the systems map please reach out to our Strategic Initaitves (engagement) at Ltcollaborations@onipaa.org

In the Spring of 2019, Liliuokalani Trust heard stories from children across the paeʻāina.

The following is a collection of community voices who answered the questions, “What allows the Native Hawaiian community to thrive, and what prevents the Native Hawaiian community from thriving?”

This video is also available to download here.