$15,877.12 vs. $402.25

This past weekend we heard the call: a call to help, a call to act, and a call to come together. Last night at the Waikiki Beachwalk stage, we witnessed it all come to fruition.

[singlepic id=27 w=180 h=120 float=left]On Friday, early in the morning with the tsunami watches still in effect in Hawai’i, I woke up with a desire to help. I quickly made several phone calls, wrote a couple of emails, and by mid-day had setup an impromptu fundraiser at our usual Lulus show. The idea was simple: instead of a tip jar, we would have a donation jar, and everyone who enjoyed our music that night could donate money which we would then collect and give to the Red Cross. By the end of the three-hour dinner show, we had collected $402.25. Amazing.

[singlepic id=28 w=150 h=100 float=right]Then Saturday night, while we are getting ready to do a private show, we get a call from our friend telling us that the Honolulu Festival wants to up the ante and produce a charity show with Jake Shimabukuro. A few emails, and calls later and we were at the Waikiki Beachwalk, ready to go! Along with Jake, and another ukulele player named Dai Hirai, we were able to raise $15,877.12. Again, amazing is the only word that can describe it.

So what’s the difference? $15,877.12 vs. $402.25? To me, there is no difference. What matters is on both of those nights, Hawai’i showed overwhelming support and Aloha for our Japanese friends and family. I remember tweeting a picture of the crowd at Beachwalk with the title, “Lots of Aloha being shown for Japan!” Immediately, I received responses from people saying that thank you, and that they could feel the support we were sending them. That’s what I will always remember from this weekend.

So as we continue on, supporting and finding ways to help, please remember that it’s the actions that speak louder than words. ManoaDNA was blessed to be a small part of the actions, and we hope to continue on. Thank you everyone for all your support, please continue to do what you can, and we wish everyone in Japan a blessed and safe week.