After the devastating fires that killed at least 111 people on Maui last week, the brewery named for the island is leading relief efforts with a special beer and an appeal for more support.
Calling the project Kokua—Hawaiian for “help”—Maui says it will brew a Kokua beer and donate 100 percent of the proceeds to three nonprofit relief efforts:
- Legacy of Aloha, which supports employees of the TS Restaurants group and Maui Brewing whose homes and livelihoods have been destroyed.
- The Makai Foundation, which is working to rebuild the homes of people who were uninsured or under-insured.
- The Maui Brewing Fire Fund, working to help with needs on the ground—such as cash cards for survivors who need supplies—in partnership with the Global Empowerment Mission.
Maui Brewing founder Garrett Marrero says the Kokua project will be “one beer, brewed by many, to support the people of Maui.”
“As we continue to stay focused on the immediate relief efforts on the ground here on Maui, we would like to take a brief moment to say ‘mahalo’ to everyone in the beer community who has reached out to check on us and offer up support to the people of Maui who are in need,” Marrero says on the web page where brewers can sign up to join. “Inspired by Sierra Nevada’s Resilience project to support the victims of the tragic Camp Fire in 2018, we would like to create the Kokua project to support the ongoing needs of the people affected by these tragic fires earlier this week here on our home island of Maui.”
Maui has two taprooms in the fire-stricken Lahaina area; neither was damaged, but both are temporarily closed as the community begins to recover. Another Maui brewery, Kohola, reported in an August 13 Instagram post that its brewery had been destroyed—sharing photos of the damage—but also that its ohana (or family) was “safe and accounted for.” Waikiki Brewing’s Lahaina location also was destroyed, and that brewery set up a GoFundMe page to support affected employees.
Breweries interested in joining the Kokua project should visit mauibrewingco.com/kokua to sign up.