The film is about the sacred Papahānaumokuākea Marine National Monument, located in the Northwest region of the Hawaiian islands.
The monument is one of the largest marine conservation areas in the world, covering over half a million square miles. It was established as a conservation area in 2006 and is managed by the Office of Hawaiian Affairs (OHA) and its three co-trustees: the Department of Commerce, the Department of the Interior, and the State of Hawaii.
OHA created “Voices of Papahānaumokuākea” to celebrate the 15-year anniversary of the monument’s official designation. It begins with mele, or song, sung by Kainani Kahaunaele. Kahunaele is a haku mele who has traveled to Papahānaumokuākea to compose songs about the region and preserve Hawaiian tradition through her music. Next, we hear mo’olelo, or stories, from eight Native Hawaiians who share their personal experiences with Papahānaumokuākea and the advocacy that led to its status as a conservation area.
In addition to the film, the co-trustees of Papahānaumokuākea have also released a document entitled “Mai Ka Po Mai,” which will help the state and federal government incorporate Hawaiian culture and tradition into its protection of the monument.
“Mai Ka Po Mai and the Voices of Papahānaumokuākea film demonstrate how providing Native Hawaiians with equal footing with federal and state entities can lead to the successful stewardship of our most precious natural and cultural resources,” said Lindsey.
For more information: papahanaumokuakea.gov