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West // West Oahu Coverstory
Nicole Kato

Area Eatery Helps Hospitalized Keiki

Fololesia Likio (left), a 10-year-old patient at Kapiolani Medical Center for Women and Children, accepts an iPad gift from Suehiro Electric and Tanioka's Seafoods and Catering. Also pictured (from left) are Mel Tanioka, Tucker (the hospital's chief canine officer), Lynn Tanioka, Ethan Lum, Jasmine Tanioka-Lum and Justin Tanioka. Photo courtesy of ACESxp.

Fololesia Likio (left), a 10-year-old patient at Kapiolani Medical Center for Women and Children, accepts an iPad gift from Suehiro Electric and Tanioka’s Seafoods and Catering. Also pictured (from left) are Mel Tanioka, Tucker (the hospital’s chief canine officer), Lynn Tanioka, Ethan Lum, Jasmine Tanioka-Lum and Justin Tanioka. Photo courtesy of ACESxp.

The Waipahu-based, family-owned Tanioka’s Seafoods and Catering – which has long been known as the go-to place for fresh poke, Hawaiian plates and bentos – aimed to make this Christmas one to remember with two outreach efforts through Tanioka’s Charity Foundation.

Recently, it donated $50,000 to Kapiolani Health Foundation in support of its pediatric programs at the nonprofit Kapiolani Medical Center for Women and Children. In addition to the monetary donation, the family also brought toys, gifts and iPads for the keiki who had to spend their holidays in the hospital.

“Lynn (his wife) selected Kapiolani hospital, and after taking a tour of the Children’s Pediatric Unit, we were all convinced, after experiencing what the cancer patients go through,” explained Mel Tanioka. “It breaks our hearts to see such young children suffer.”

The charity didn’t stop at Kapiolani Health Foundation. In support of victims of the recent Typhoon Haiyan in the Philippines, Tanioka’s also distributed printed T-shirts donated by Print Proz to customers who donated $20 or more to the cause.

“We previously raised more than $30,000 for the victims of the Japan tsunami,” Tanioka said. “Partnering with Aloha

United Way and New Hope Diamond Head gave our customers a choice of who to write their checks to.”

He also said that they will continue taking donations for several months, as it will take the Philippines people years to recover.

“We truly thank the Lord for allowing Tanioka’s to be the stewards of the many generous supporters and friends who give their donations, time and hearts to help make this a better place to live in our beautiful state of Hawaii,” he added.

The foundation launched from what began as a small golf outing for friends and family.

“Since our golf outing grew to a golf tournament … we decided to form a charity organization,” said Tanioka, foundation co-founder, noting that the tournament now attracts more than 300 golfers.

The foundation was established in 2006 as a way to raise funds for the needy. For more information on its work, visit taniokas.com.

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