Logging Your Volunteer Hours

Nominations for Distinguished Service

Each year as part of spring Ho’opuka (graduation), the East-West Center Education Program recognizes individuals nominated by their fellow students who go above and beyond in service to the EWC community. To nominate a deserving participant for the Distinguished Service Award, please fill out this Distinguished Service Award Nomination Form.

Opportunities for Volunteering at EWC

Looking for Volunteer opportunities? There are several major events that happen throughout the year here at EWC. Contact your East West Center Participants Association board or your program coordinator for more information on any of the following EWC events or approved partnership agencies (Click to expand):

EWCPA Election (Mid-September)

Elections for the EWCPA board happen every year. Volunteers are needed to help with the town hall event and to manage the election period (check in voters, issue ballots, tally results, etc.). Positions on the EWCPA elections committee may also be available. Volunteers may sign up when advertised in August.

Concert on the Lawn (November)

Volunteers are needed for group management, performances, cooking, logistics, and more. There will be a call for volunteers by the event organizers in early Fall. Contact the EWCPA board for info.

Hoʻopuka Ceremony (December and May)

Hoʻopuka honors those EWC participants ending their Awards and moving on to next chapters — whether graduating, starting a new degree program, or changing their status at the Center. The Education Program seeks volunteers to assist with set up, food prep, and other aspects of this event.

International Graduate Student Conference (mid-February)

The IGSC requires many volunteers, leading up to and culminating in the event in February. Ph.D. students may volunteer to review abstracts during the fall semester. The event requires volunteers for promotions, set-up, tear-down, logistics, as session moderators, and more.

EWCPA Intercultural Potluck (February)

Volunteers are needed for group management, performances, cooking, logistics, and more. A call for volunteers will come out in late December/early January. Contact your EWCPA board.

East-West Fest (April)

The East-West Fest is a major community event, produced jointly by the EWCPA and East-West Center staff. Volunteer opportunities include event planning (various committees), performing, culture booths, demonstrations, promotions, logistics, and more. There will be several calls for volunteers at different stages starting in Fall.

Community Building Institute (CBI)

CBI happens twice a year, and it requires many volunteers to run smoothly! Volunteer opportunities include leading project groups, greeting and hospitality in Hale Hālāwai, set-up and tear-down for meals and sessions, drivers for shopping trips, and more. Volunteers may sign up for roles when advertised in July and December.

EWCPA Shopping Shuttle (year-round)

Volunteer drivers are needed weekly for the EWCPA shopping shuttle trips. Sign-ups are welcome all year for those with a valid driver’s license. Drivers must register with Mona Nakihei, Program Assistant, and sign up with the EWCPA Shuttle Coordinator.

The Exchange

The Exchange, the weekly seminar and performance series, requires committed volunteers to be group facilitators. Facilitator positions are advertised at the beginning of each semester (August and January), and those selected attend each session during the semester to lead group discussions and activities. Volunteers also are needed for weekly food preparation.

Aloha Harvest

Aloha Harvest is the largest food rescue and redistribution organization in Hawaiʻi, getting quality excess food into stomachs instead of landfills. Free of charge and free of liability, they pick up quality excess food from donors and redistribute it to recipient agencies feeding the hungry like homeless shelters and social services. For volunteer opportunities, visit https://alohaharvest.galaxydigital.com/ or contact Hannah Emery at hannah@alohaharvest.org.

Atherton YMCA

If you are looking for opportunities to volunteer for school, scholarships, or just want to give back to the community, please visit the Atherton YMCA website or watch their presentation to EWC students. For more information, contact (Mr.) Cassidy Inamasu – cinamasu@ymcahonolulu.org. Please use the in-house community service process on the Student Portal and complete the online form to log and account for volunteer hours completed.

Institute for Human Services (IHS)

The Institute for Human Services is the oldest, largest, and most comprehensive human services agency focused exclusively on ending and preventing homelessness in Hawaii. Interested volunteers must visit their website and/or contact (Ms.) Leona Larkin –leonal@ihshawaii.org. Please use the in-house community service process on the Student Portal and complete the online form to log and account for volunteer hours completed.

The Kuloa’a Institute

The Kūloa‘a Institute runs a professional development workshop for Kapi’olani Community College faculty about developing culturally responsive online courses and is seeking student volunteers to assist. The volunteer hours are flexible, and students will be assisting professors with implementing culturally aware practices in online classes and participating in discussion sessions. This can potentially be a longer-term opportunity. To get involved, please contact Leigh Dooley (ldooley@hawaii.edu), faculty member at Kapiolani Community College.

Mānoa Heritage Center

Docents and garden volunteers are needed at the Mānoa Heritage Center. Contact (Ms.) Ke’ala Wong – keala@manoaheritagecenter.org. Please use the in-house community service process on the Student Portal and complete the online form to log and account for volunteer hours completed.

Kahana Valley

Ahupuaʻa ʻO Kahana State Park is located on the windward side of O’ahu, between Kaneʻohe and Laʻie, and 26 miles from Honolulu. Kahana is one of only a few publicly owned ahupuaʻa, or ancient Hawaiian land division including lands from the mountains to the sea (mauka-makai) and encompassing all of the resource zones needed for subsistence, in the state. Interested volunteers should contact Alapaki Luke.

Pacific and Asian Affairs Council (PAAC)

Housed on the 4th floor of Burns Hall, the Pacific and Asian Affairs Council (PAAC) is an independent, international education 501(c)3 nonprofit with a mission to promote a greater awareness and understanding of foreign affairs issues with special attention to Hawaiʻi’s role in the Asia-Pacific region.

Since 1954, PAAC has provided global education to more than 92,737 high school students and 85,400 community members statewide and has hosted approximately 1,384 international visitors through the State Department’s International Visitor Leadership Program (IVLP). See their website for more information.

EWC students often volunteer with PAAC.  Volunteer opportunities include: 

  1. Helping to facilitate a variety of global education conferences, workshops, and other programs for high school students in Hawaiʻi.  If you would like to be notified of upcoming volunteer opportunities, please fill out this form to join our mailing list
  2. Being a guest speaker at a local high school. PAAC disseminates a list of guest speakers to its students and teachers, who then choose whom they would like to invite to their school to speak. If you are interested in being on the list and speaking to youth in Hawaiʻi about your area of expertise, culture, language, background, or life experience, please fill out this form . Please direct any questions to Cheyenne Prater, High School Global Education Program Director, at program@paachawaii.org. EWC students from all fields, cultures, and backgrounds are welcome.  

Please direct any questions to program@paachawaii.org.

UH Mānoa Women’s Center

The UHM Women’s Center (website, instagram) is devoted to supporting the academic careers of both undergraduate and graduate students regardless of their background. This mission helps to strengthen the multicultural and gender-sensitive aspects of the university and fosters an environment free of racism, sexism and homophobia. There are three programs within the Women’s Center: Bridge to Hope (BTH), Student Parents at Mānoa (SP@M), and PAU (Prevention, Awareness & Understanding) Violence Program. 

The Women’s Center offers many services to students, including (but not limited to):

• Crisis services: referrals for students dealing with domestic violence, sexual assault, poverty, sex or gender discrimination, and lesbian, gay, bisexual, and/or transgender student safety

• Referral services: our staff can assist students in connecting with on and off-campus resources for domestic violence, sexual assault, homelessness, legal aid, and other crisis needs

• Access to a private lactation room for nursing mothers

• Free feminine and safe sex products

• A “Safe Space” office and student lounge

• Student lounge equipped with WiFi, charging outlets, air conditioning and comfy furniture/tables for studying, taking a break or hanging out 

• A reading resource library with hundreds of books, magazines, and journals

• Free informational brochures and flyers from a wide range of organizations

• Service learning, internships, practicum placements, fellowships and volunteering opportunities for students

• University and community networking opportunities

• Sponsors special workshops, trainings, lectures, and presentations by local, national, and international speakers on a wide range of gender-related issues