Youth Action Alliance Hawaii



Program Description

Youth Action Alliance Hawaii is a 7-month, cohort-based, virtual program for Hawaii high school students seeking to be civically engaged, take action to address issues in their community, and possess a global understanding of how those issues connect Hawaii with the rest of the world. 


The program represents a collaboration between three like-minded non-profit organizations - Ceeds of Peace, HawaiiKidsCAN, and the Pacific & Asian Affairs Council - that believe young people are vital to tackling the challenges we face as a society.  Each organization will draw on their strengths to oversee a different aspect of the program:

Program Goals

Students will:

* Identify the local connections and relevancies of complex transnational issues

* Learn the ins-and-outs of civic participation, including the fundamentals of advocacy and policy 

* Collaborate with peers to develop, plan, and implement an action project that 

1) addresses an important issue in the community,

2) incorporates legislative advocacy, and 

3) is informed by a global perspective of the problem

* Develop leadership skills relating to communication, teamwork, relationship-building, critical thinking, civic participation, public speaking, and project management

* Cultivate a greater capacity for empathy, deeper appreciation for diversity, and strengthened commitment to community






Students must meet the following criteria:

  • * Currently in high school (Grades 9, 10, 11, or 12)

  • * Available on all program dates

  • * Currently residing in the State of Hawaii

  • * Have access to an electronic device (computer, laptop, tablet, etc.) capable of videoconferencing

    • Support is available for students with no or unreliable internet access

  • * Applicants should also possess:

    • Interest in local, national, and global issues

    • Desire to participate in local democratic processes

    • Commitment to work for positive change in their community


Program Schedule

Students who submit a completed application will be contacted to schedule a short online interview between September 9 -12, 2020. Successful applicants will be notified by September 15, 2020. 

Dates and times for program meetings are set in advance. All meetings are mandatory. Contact program organizers if you have a question or concern about scheduling conflicts.

All meetings are from 9:00am - 11:00am, unless otherwise noted. Some meeting dates are on Sunday due to SATs/ACTs testing times. 


Program Dates:

  • * September 19, 2020 (Saturday)

  • * October 4, 2020 (Sunday) - Students will also participate in the Hawaii Children Youth Summit this weekend.

  • * October 17, 2020 (Saturday)

  • * October 31, 2020 (Saturday)

  • * November 8, 2020 (Sunday)

  • * November 21, 2020 (Saturday)

  • * December 6, 2020 (Sunday)

  • * January 9, 2021 (Saturday)

  • * January 23, 2021 (Saturday)

  • * February 7, 2021 (Sunday)

  • * February 20, 2021 (Saturday)

  • * March 6, 2021 (Saturday)

  • * March 15-19 - Optional participation in Education Week at the State Legislature

  • * March 20, 2021 (Saturday)

  • * April 3, 2021 (Saturday)

  • * April 24, 2021 (Saturday) - Student Showcase



Successful applicants will be grouped based on their interests into one of five hui, each based on a different theme. Students in the same hui will work together to develop and carry out their community action plan. 


The five hui are:

  • * Health and Well-being
    Includes food security, student mental health, bullying

  • * Climate Change & Sustainable Ecosystems
    Includes climate actions related to renewable energy, fossil fuel reductions, and energy efficiency; plastics reduction; native ecosystem restoration; pollution

  • * Social Justice & Culture
    Includes equity for race, indigenous people, gender equality, LGBTQ+

  • * Quality Education
    Includes issues related to equity, school to prison pipeline

  • * Building a Resilient Hawaii
    Includes COVID response; disaster preparedness; decent work and economic growth; peace, justice, and strong institutions


Required Application Materials

  • 1) Completed online application form

  • 2) Essay, video, or some other creative submission (submitted with online application)

  • 3) Recent school transcript (unofficial copy ok, submitted with online application)

  • 4) Completed online teacher recommendation form (to be completed by a teacher)


Application Deadline

Monday, September 7th at 12:00am (midnight)



Limited to 30 students

Virtual Information Session

Scheduled for August 19, 2020 at 6:00 pm 



Atherton Family Foundation

City & County of Honolulu

Rotary Club of Honolulu

Stevens World Peace Foundation


Contact Information

Jason Shon

High School Program Director
Pacific & Asian Affairs Council

Scott Nishimoto

Executive Director

Ceeds of Peace



Aisha Heredia

Community Outreach & Organizing Manager


808 866 7568