The Kauai Forest Bird Recovery Program works tirelessly to help save Kauai’s rare forest birds. Since the birds are such an integral component of the forest, the efforts of KFBRP also benefit the inner workings of native Hawaiian forests. However, it can be costly for field crews to travel to remote areas of the Alaka’i to do their work to protect the forest.
There are many ways to support the efforts of the Kauai Forest Bird Recovery Program ranging from volunteering to changing how you shop, even if you cannot afford to donate to our Funding Campaign. Click through the slideshow for more details on how you can help!
Show your Support by Volunteering
A really fun way to support KFBRP is to volunteer. This is a great way to add meaningful memories to your vacation or just make a difference in your community. There are many opportunities to volunteer with KFBRP. Imagine assisting with field work in the remote regions of the forest. If strenuous hiking and camping in inclement weather are not your thing, KFBRP can also use help with a variety of other opportunities including:
Mistnet and raingear mending
Light carpentry work (e.g. putting up shelves, painting)
Staffing a KFBRP table at outreach events
Here is what one of our volunteers said about participating in our Bird Surveys:
“I had the unique opportunity of volunteering with the Kauai Forest Bird Recovery Program this spring. Forest Bird Surveys were coming up, and I needed an excuse to get into the forest. What a great opportunity!
Volunteering in the field is not for the faint of heart. The hiking trails in Koke’e can be steep, slippery, muddy, and sometimes difficult to find and navigate. The weather can be chilly, wet, foggy, and generally miserable. BUT, who has time to be miserable when there is work to do?
After meeting at Koke’e museum, volunteers were assigned to various trails based on their experience. We all split up and began working on refreshing the transects. The old markers were mostly gone, or at the very best hard to find. Thank goodness for technology (GPS) leading the way.
From the road, we hiked deep into the jungle, sloshing through mud and tangled forest where we spent most of the day searching for the transects. The seasoned staff pointed at the different bird calls as we hiked. It was both fascinating and rewarding to assist with their work. I would recommend it to anyone who is interested in hiking, birding, nature, or Hawaii.”
Shop on Amazon to Protect Kauai’s Forest Birds
One of the easiest ways to support KFBRP is to shop on Amazon. When you are ready to shop, just use this LINK to go to Amazon Smile and a portion of your purchase will be returned to KFBRP. The hardest part is to remember to use the link every time you shop. There is an extension that you can install in your browser to help you remember to shop via Smile. Make sure to visit Amazon Smile before Christmas, so all that all your holiday purchases can make an impact on KFBRP’s funding.
Clean Your Gear
If you hike in Hawaiʻi, make sure to clean your gear every time you go. Seeds and fungal pathogens can be carried between locations on your hiking boots, spreading unwanted invasive plants and diseases in pristine forest regions. The best way to to protect the forest is to clean your gear using the protocol described below. While it sounds simple, cleaning your gear has become extremely important because Rapid ʻŌhiʻa Death (ROD), was detected on Kauaʻi in May 2018. ROD is caused by a fungal pathogen. ʻŌhiʻa (Metrosideros polymorpha) is the most abundant native tree in the state of Hawaiʻi, and provides food and habitat for native forest birds. Unfortunately, healthy trees that become infected with the fungal pathogen can die within a few weeks of becoming exposed.
Sanitation protocols have been developed on the Big Island to keep the pathogen from spreading. These protocols include scrubbing boots and other footwear with 70% isopropyl alcohol after any forest activity and thoroughly washing any equipment and vehicles that enter or are used in the forest. Melissa SP Fisher, Director of TNC’s Kaua‘i Forest Program hopes that everyone on Kaua‘i will be vigilant in practicing these protocols.
The forest will thank you for your efforts!
One Percent for the Planet
1% for the Planet is a global network of businesses, nonprofits, and individuals that work together for a healthy planet. So how does it work? When you support a 1% for the Planet business, those businesses give back to the environment. They do this buy selecting projects and non-profits within the network that are meaningful to them. Then at the end of the year, they simply give back one percent of their profits to their selected non-profit.
Ultimately, consumers can choose to frequent 1% for the Planet business that give back to the projects that align with your giving goals. For example, KFBRP/GIRCD is a 1% for the Planet partner. As a consumer, you can choose businesses that support us. If you are into birding, you might be interested in going on a birding photo tour. If you choose Eagle-eye Tours, you have chosen a business that gives back to KFBRP. When you purchase your tour, one percent of your purchase comes back to support us.
1% for the Planet was started in 2002 by Yvon Chouinard (founder of Patagonia) and Craig Mathews (founder of Blue Ribbon Flies). Both successful entrepreneurs, they recognized the power of collective action to protect the environment. When you shop at Patagonia, you support many important environmental causes (including KFBRP) through the 1% for the Planet program. If you shop on-line with Patagonia, you will find that after you make your purchase, a new page will appear that highlights environmental projects vetted by the organization in your local area. If you live in Hawaii, you are likely to see GIRCD pop-up. This page allows consumers to make additional donations to approved projects.
You can also encourage businesses to partner with 1% for the Planet, and ask them to choose GIRCD as their beneficiary. MAHALO FOR YOUR SUPPORT!
Donate Fine Art
A big MAHALO goes out to all the artists that have supported us by creating beautiful imagery of Kauai’s forest birds. Photographers, sculptors, painters, illustrators, and other fine artist have supported KFBRP by donating works that can be auctioned, sold, or reproduced as t-shirts, magnets, note cards, mugs, or on other gear. If you are an artist looking to support or partner with KFBRP, please contact us to see how we can work together.