Summer keiki programs plentiful in Honolulu, but demand is high

Local News

HONOLULU (KHON2) — The City and County of Honolulu’s Summer Fun program will be back this year. Details are still being ironed out and an announcement on dates and registration could come soon.

Even if spots fill-up there are many summer options for keiki and working parents once school ends, or even before.

If your child has been distance learning throughout the pandemic, the YMCA has tailored its program to help with learning loss as well as social and emotional development.

“Social and emotional learning skills, these are the skills that help you build strong relationships and manage your emotions. It gives you those critical thinking skills to make good decisions,” YMCA Honolulu VP of Marketing Lisa Ontai said.

The YMCA is also reopening it’s popular overnight camps at Camp Erdman.

“There are limitations on our capacity so we recommend that parents register as soon as possible and we realize that there’s still a lot of uncertainty there are some financial concerns going on in our community so we’ve eased up on some of our procedures and protocols,” Ontai added.

Kamaaina Kids is offering its A Summer Full of Wonder program, which will be held at seven locations across Oahu. They are also working on programs for neighbor islands.

“Each week, our programs will consist of a combination of guest presenters, virtual experiences, and hands-on enrichment activities, in a safe and socially distanced environment,” Kamaaina Kids Digital Media Specialist Kelsea Lickert said.

Kamaaina Kids is also in partnership with the Malaekahana Campground, where families can take their kids outdoors while still maintaining distance learning.

“They’ll bring their kids out have their kids do schooling here and have them enjoy the great outdoors,” Environmental Community Services Manager Jolie Moniz said.

For all of these programs, capacity has been an issue, especially in times of COVID-19.

As for the city’s Summer Fun program, how many kids they can take in will depend on how much help they can get.

“We are beginning to take employment applications for people to work at summer fun. The more people we have the more kids that we can accomidate in a lot of cases,” Department of Parks and Recreation Spokesman Nathan Serota said.

Both the YMCA and Kamaaina Kids are partnered with Summer Fun for post-summer fun programs.

“We also work with the city and county and offer the after-summer fun care because those programs end and 1:00 or 2:30 and that’s not usually when a parent’s workday ends right,” Ontai said.

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