By Noelle Nakaoka, Punahou ‘20, Hawai’i Public Health Institute Youth Council Member and Charipay Intern

HIPHI Youth Council member Noelle Nakaoka didn’t let COVID-19 keep her from helping others. She joined other Youth Council members and HIPHI staff to pack meals for Meals on Wheels and put together face shields for health care providers. When those opportunities ended she teamed up with fellow Punahou alum Kyler Gilbert and the company he founded, Charipay, where she is now interning. 

Charipay is the first ever cause and event centered donation platform that connects users to causes and charities. Kyler and fellow UCLA students wanted to create a platform for millennials to connect to causes they were interested in supporting. As soon as the COVID-19 pandemic hit, Charipay pivoted its efforts to create an emergency relief fund where 100% of contributions go to donating personal protective equipment. In recent months, Charipay has donated masks and face shields to hospitals in both California, and Hawaii. 

Now, through partnering with the Hawai’i Public Health Institute, Charipay is expanding their range of affiliations to include local independent healthcare providers, non-profit organizations and social service agencies. But they need your help to help meet the needs these groups have. You don’t have to be a millennial to use Charipay and they are dedicated to maintaining transparency and accountability— all donations from Hawai’i will directly impact the local Hawai’i community. Please consider a donation if you are able to do so. You can donate HERE , the Charipay COVID-19 Emergency Relief Fund and help protect Hawai’i individuals on the front lines battling the pandemic.

Personal note: As a HIPHI Youth Council Member, I learned the importance of advocating for causes that I have a strong belief in, banning flavored tobacco products. I jumped at the opportunity to intern at Charipay to establish local connections to protect my community against the COVID-19 pandemic. Born and raised in Honolulu, Hawai‘i, I’ll be attending UH Manoa in the fall of this year which will allow me to build an even deeper connection to the Hawai’i community.