A newly formed partnership was announced December 2 between the State of Hawaii Office of Hawaiian Affairs (OHA) and the nonprofit Council for Native Hawaiian Advancement (CNHA) that could improve the lives of 700 Native Hawaiians over a 24-month period.
The partnership will deliver financial education, homeownership outreach, down payment grants and assistance to improve credit scores.
“OHA is dedicating $500,000 toward the Native Hawaiian Family Finance Project,” said Rosalee Puaoi, CNHA Project Manager. “It’s great to be working with our trust agency, and definitely on a project that will improve income situations and family finances.”
The plan for the OHA investment will see an almost a three dollar leverage for every one dollar spent on the project. It will provide hands-on assistance, helping families create plans and strategies to stabilize their finances, reach their goals and owning a home. There will be a savings match component where families that save up to $2,500 will receive $15,000 in matching funds to help with purchasing a house anywhere in the state.
“The community will definitely benefit from OHA's investment,” Puaoi continued. “For every dollar invested in a home built or purchased, there is an economic benefit beyond the family – to the larger marketplace and Hawaii’s economy.”
CNHA also partners with certified housing counseling agencies Hawaiian Community Assets (HCA) and the Hawaii Home Ownership Center (HHOC) to offer services throughout the state.