Rotary Club of Honolulu Volunteer Project

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On August 5 and 12, over 50 volunteers from the Rotary Club of Honolulu, the Palama Board of Trustees, and Palama staff came to campus to help with two major grounds projects: planting ulu trees in along the gym parking lot along the H1 freeway and installing a raised-bed instructional garden next to the dining hall.

The ulu trees will create some cover from the highway and provide fruit for our after school youth cooking classes and community events. The garden will be tended by Palama youth and seniors to grow vegetables and herbs be used in youth cooking classes and in a kitchen skills job training program, currently being developed.

The RAT Pack (Rotary Action Team) and volunteers used the two Saturdays to prepare and plant 21 ulu trees along the H1 freeway and buried 100' PVC piping to provide water for irrigation. In an area next to the Higashino Building, the team built and painted 9 planter boxes, erected 10 fence posts, and dug a trench for an irrigation system to the garden. During the following Saturday, the team enclosed the garden with recycled fencing material and prepared the raised–beds with appropriate top soil.  A great job by RAT Pack and other volunteers.

The Rotary Club provided the planning and coordination, and the labor for the project and also sourced the ulu trees and lots of necessary supplies, tools and equipment to construct the various components of the enclosed garden and planting of the trees.  Thank you to the RAT Pack for their thoughtfulness and generosity.

You can see more pictures of the project on the Rotary Club's website. It was a fun event, with lots of physical labor and sweat, and most satisfying to see the project come together.

In the coming weeks, we are planning to install an aquaponics system, thanks to a grant from The Garden Club of Honolulu as part of the instructional garden project.

Mahalo to the Rotary Club of Honolulu and Palama Settlement board members for all their very hard work!

Photos from the Project

A batting cage frame still stands next to the dining hall behind the Higashino Building, although the cage itself was removed years ago. This is what the space looked like before the garden was dug.


Painting boards for the raised beds.


Planting ulu trees.


Digging the trench line and fence post holes.


The finished garden beds. We're ready to plant!