Moku o Keawe was the star at Mayor Mitch Roth’s County of Hawaiʻi Sustainability Summit at the beginning of March. All things Big Island were on the agenda: from climate to environment to food, top of mind topics were discussed by many of the island’s biggest organizations. Hawaiʻi Public Health Institute’s East and West Hawaiʻi Community Coordinators attended the two-day summit and were impressed by Mayor Roth’s ability to pull together a coordinated summit within his first 100 days. 

Leading up to the summit, Mayor Roth’s team hosted a series of listening sessions, including one at a Hawaiʻi Island Food Alliance meeting where members shared their experiences, priorities, and concerns. For HIPHI’s coordinators who work on environmental, systems, and policy changes in topics such as access to healthy foods, the built environment, and worksite wellness, it was inspiring and validating to see the county prioritize many of those spaces and to do so through a platform as expansive as a county-wide summit. The conversations around transportation, health, and food security encapsulate the larger work HIPHI’s Big Island coordinators already operate within.

With the Sustainability Summit behind us, HIPHI’s Big Island coordinators will use the conversations that stemmed, and will continue to stem, to orient their community-driven work in all things healthy eating and active living related. We hope to partner with Mayor Roth and Hawaiʻi County to do the same. 

To learn more about the summit, please visit their website.

To learn more about HIPHI’s Big Island programming, please visit our website.