Reid Matsushima, HPF
Four years ago, 20-something Reid Matsushima was chatting with a few friends about what kind of contributions they could make to the local community. “We thought it was a really cool idea if younger professionals start trying to make a positive impact in the community,” says Matsushima, field director and financial adviser for Northwestern Mutual.
What started as a conversation among friends soon blossomed into the Honolulu Professionals Foundation (HPF) – a group of professionals that is dedicated to community service through partnerships with charitable organizations. The group received nonprofit status in 2010 and consists of 17 members who range in age from late 20s to mid-30s.
“It is easy for people in our generation to just get caught up in starting our careers and starting families,” says Rebecca Dayhuff, an attorney who serves as HPF’s secretary. “But (HPF) also wanted to reflect that we are capable of helping the community, and it’s important to remember that aspect as well.”
Each year, HPF hosts a fundraiser for a different group. This year’s event benefits Kupu – a local nonprofit that provides experiential education and job-training opportunities for youths, with an emphasis on the environment. The event takes place from 6 to 10 p.m. Friday, July 6, at Hyatt Regency Waikiki Beach Resort and Spa pool terrace.
“As a board, we really liked what (Kupu) is doing,” says Dayhuff. “I think that Kupu’s mission is going to be important in the future – the sustainability of the environment and moving toward more green jobs – and training our youths to be prepared for that change in the economy.”
In addition to raising funds for a group, HPF also partners with the organization for other hands-on projects – an aspect to HPF’s work that is new this year. HPF members worked with Kupu in a lo’i patch for the group’s annual service day earlier this year. “We are really hoping that we can make a big impact for Kupu,” Dayhuff says. “We also just want to help Kupu get its name out there, and help the community know all the great things that they are doing.”
Previously, HPF has hosted fundraisers for high school sports programs, Aloha Medical Mission and the Boys and Girls Club of Hawaii.
“There are people out there whom we can help, even in just small ways,” Dayhuff says. “Hopefully through (HPF), we will be able to benefit the community as a whole.”
The event will feature heavy pupu, a raffle and silent auction, drinks, and live music by Kupaoa, Mango Season and the Kapakahi Band. Tickets cost $75 presale until June 22 and $90 until July 3. VIP tables also are available. For more information, email firstname.lastname@example.org or visit honoluluprofessionals.org.