Living808 is celebrating volunteer appreciation month throughout the month of April and on today’s show Hawaii Business editor Steve Petranik explained the importance of volunteering especially when dealing with kids.

“I have been the head judge for the Spelling Bee Championship for most of the years since the Bee was revived in 2011. I remember that first year: the bee lasted something like 43 rounds and the two finalists both had the last name Kim. I am so grateful that Kama`aina Kids sponsors the state Spelling Bee every year.Volunteers are essential to our community because not everything that is precious and worthwhile generates a profit. That’s why we need volunteers to protect the land and the ocean; to nurture everyone’s children, not just their own kids. Volunteers sustain the best of Hawaii.”

Daniel Chun, the Director of Sales, and Community and Public Relations for Alaska Air has been instrumental in affording our island children opportunities to travel to the continental United States to showcase their talents in various competitions.

 He explains how important it is for corporations like Alaska Airlines to support our island youth.

“It’s important to support the youth today because they will be the future and hopefully, they will pay it forward. If we continue to encourage and empower the island youth in part by giving them these opportunities, they will have the skills, understanding and determination to make a difference.”

Both men had great advice on how to choose the right place to volunteer and feel good about their participation in the community.

“Volunteering is an act of great generosity and selflessness. You give of your time and energy and sometimes your money. But the rewards you get back can be huge too. Seeing the smiles on young faces. Or seeing the other results of your work. Knowing that in this life, you did not just take but you gave back too. Realizing that in a small way, you helped save what is precious about Hawaii.”