How Hawai‘i Keiki Hope to Transform the Polluted Ala Wai Into Their Future Playground

Kristen Nemoto Jay
Special to The Hawai‘i Herald

It’s a Monday afternoon at Ala Wai Elementary School and Lori Kwee’s fourth grade class is excited. While most 9-year-olds would be in class at this hour, Kwee’s “Golden Leaders” are on an excursion to the Ala Wai Canal. They are on a mission.

It had been a month since they were last there participating in the Genki Ala Wai Project, a collaboration between EM (Effective Microorganisms) Hawaii and the Hawaii Exemplary State Foundation. As part of their STEM (science, technology, engineering and math) curriculum, Kwee’s students — along with other fourth grade classes at Ala Wai Elementary and students from Jefferson Elementary School — are volunteering their time to help the Genki Ala Wai Project reach its goal of restoring the Ala Wai Canal by using Effective Microorganisms, or EM®.

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