Bank of Hawaii Gives Back to the Community

BOH logoIn a new and different way of doing things, one of Hawaii’s large financial institutions did more than just join in with another non-profit for some corporate philanthropy, they ran their own show! Rather than join in with the walks hosted by the American Red Cross, the American Heart Association or one of our other charities, Bank of Hawaii organized and did their own walk!

The Bank came up with a list of five charities and presented the list to their staff to vote and chose one. For the first year of this new philanthropic venture, the winning charity was IHS, the Institute for Human Services.

IHS feeds and houses the homeless. They provide clean clothing, clean showers and good food for those who are, or have become, homeless and would otherwise have nothing to eat and nowhere to sleep.

To keep things interesting and entertaining for staff and their families, not only did the organizers get local TV and radio celebrity, Kimo Kahoano to attend and MC the event, they also put together a “Centipede Parade” contest for the different departments in the company to get together and have a little parade. The rules? Have a theme and stay connected.

Noah and the Ark

This was supposed to be Noah, or maybe Evan, and I believe this was the first place winner. Noah, or Evan, did have a bad hair day though.

Crayons on Parade

Then there were the cruizin’ crayolas, whom I believe took second place.

Trust Real Estate

These real estate people were, well… a neighborhood? These buildings with legs took 3rd if I’m not mistaken.

Dragon on Parade

My favorites were the dragon shown above (they looked more like a centipede than any of the others) and these absolutely adorable ice cream cones seen below. I thought they were shaved ice when I first saw them but they were ice cream cones. I just thought they were so darn cute!

Ice Cream Cones on Parade

After the “centipedes” completed their walk and after the walk participants got in some warm-ups, the walkers were off! The route was a nice jaunt around Kapiolani Park covering approximately 1.8 miles.

Walkers Start Out

It was a beautiful day with a warm morning sun and nice tradewinds. The group of employees and their families were in good spirits as about 1,000 or so moved out in their blue t-shirts in support of their chosen charity.

Al Landon at the Finish Line

At the end of the walk the bank’s President and CEO, Al Landon, greets walkers as they cross the finish line.

Fruits and Juice at the Finish

And, what do we have here? Juice (in cartons) and bottled water! And it was only a 1.8 mile walk. Imagine that.

Food at the FinishThose who are regular readers know what I am referring to. For those who are new here, just ignore the hint of sarcasm. Besides, in all fairness, this is a large corporation and they can afford it.

But wait, it gets better… food! Volunteers participated in serving up a nice little breakfast for their friends and co-workers. The menu? Eggs, rice and Portuguese sausage of course! Okay, so no Spam on this particular morning, but the Portuguese sausage is another local favorite. There were fresh oranges and apples to choose from too.

The walk started at 8:00 in the morning so the walkers were hungry for breakfast and the food was good!

Next up, there were two bands playing familiar music and while some staff sat and watched, others got up to do the electric slide! Kimo Kahoano, who is also the co-host of Hawaii Stars, stopped the music and proceeded to lead the group of dancers so that they would all be in step.

Kimo leads the Electric Slide

He organized them quite nicely and did a good job of getting them all in unison!

Kimo keeps the sliders moving

At the end of the morning and after the winners of the centipede contest were announced, Bank of Hawaii presented IHS with a whopping $125,000 check. These funds were raised for IHS by the staff and officers of the Bank.

I’m not sure who was more stunned by the amount of that check, the Bank employees or the recipient organization! Obviously the Bank’s staff members did a lot better than they thought.

This opens the door for the other financial institutions in town to follow suit. They always do. It’s always interesting to watch the banks battle over these publicly visible things and, going forward, this event and what follows should be a very interesting thing to watch.

Hmmm… I think a charity war between the banks might be a pretty good war to start. Bank of Hawaii has thrown down the gauntlet so let’s see if First Hawaiian Bank and/or Central Pacific Bank pick it up! Hmmm… shall I send this link to their corporate offices? I would love to start this war! Hey, I would just be helping them meet their CRA (Community Reinvestment Act) requirements (evil grin)!

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  • 1 Homespun Honolulu » Some Interesting Updates Worth Reading // Jul 2, 2007 at 10:11 pm

    […] less startling, not at all nerve racking and probably pure coincidence and a little amusing. In the recent story about Bank of Hawaii putting together a charity walk for the Institute for Human Services, I said how comical it would […]

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