Campaigning For Hawaii’s Keiki

By Michael J. Robinson, president, Kapiolani Health Foundation

Keolamau Yee was born on July 11, 1991 – dangerously premature at only 27 weeks. Were it not for the Neonatal Intensive Care Unit (NICU) at Kapi’olani Medical Center for Women & Children, she would not have survived. Today, the Punahou alumna is thriving as a gymnast studying pre-med at UPenn, and hopes one day to become a neonatologist.

Michael J. Robinson

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Michael J. Robinson

As Hawaii’s only full-service children’s hospital, the nonprofit Kapi’olani relies on support from the community to ensure that Hawaii’s children receive the best care possible. Now, to secure that legacy of care for future generations, Kapi’olani Health Foundation has launched the public giving phase of the Campaign for Hawaii’s Children, a capital campaign to raise funds for Phase 1 of a 15-year master plan to rebuild and expand Kapi’olani Medical Center’s critical care and educational areas.

“The hospital as it stands today was opened in 1976,” said campaign co-chair Dee Jay Mailer, CEO of Kamehameha Schools and a former nurse at Kapi’olani. “While it was built to the standard of care available then and has been updated as much as possible to keep pace over the years, it is time for a rebuild that will allow Kapi’olani to continue to provide the highest quality care for its patients while offering a more family-centered environment to help the healing process.”

The campaign goal for this first phase, which consists of a rebuild of both the Neonatal and the Pediatric Intensive Care Units, is $30 million. The campaign has already reached the halfway point with more than $15 million raised to date, thanks to donations from many generous individuals and community-minded organizations such as First Hawaiian Bank Foundation, Island Insurance Companies, James and Abigail Campbell Foundation, Omidyar ‘Ohana Fund of the Hawai’i Community Foundation, Samuel N. and Mary Castle Foundation, American Savings Bank, HEI Charitable Foundation, Cooke Foundation, Local Union 1186 IBEW/Electrical Contractors Association of Hawai’i, Alexander and Baldwin Foundation, Costco Wholesale, City Mill, Pharmacare Hawai’i, Disney Worldwide Services, Title Guaranty Escrow Services and Monarch Insurance Service.

To donate to the Campaign for Hawaii’s Children or learn more about the renovation, call 535-7100 or visit