Founding Kupuna & History

Founding Kupuna

Maria Suganuma

Winona Freitas

Rufina Molaka-Lee


Kula No Na Po’e Hawai’i was formed in 1992 by a group of concerned community women who sought to improve the educational skills of Homestead children and strengthen relationships between parents and the public school system. Introduced to the community by Dr. Liela Nitta, KNNPH was originally conceptualized as a community school, providing educational opportunities for children and adults. Community volunteers come together to shape the philosophy, mission, objectives and programs for a community-based organization dedicated to education.

The organization officially received its 501(c)3 status in 1994 as Kula No Na Po’e Hawai’i o Papakolea, Kewalo, Kalawahine. Over time, KNNPH programs evolved to include wellness clinics, education & social programs for youth, nutrition, exercise, traditional Hawaiian healing classes, and literacy fairs.