HAMPTON ROADS, Va. (WAVY) – The Hawaii Spirit Law called “Aloha Spirit” is about treating everyone with love and helping others.
In Hampton Roads, people are trying to show that same spirit for those affected by the devastating Maui wildfires.
Joe and Karen Johnson, owners of The Bee and The Biscuit, lived on the island for 15 years.
“We’ve been there for all those years and continued to go back,” Karen Johnson said. “We love it and we love the people.”
They know the Aloha Spirit firsthand.
“People love each other there and when something happens to one, it happens to everyone. Everyone is rolling up their sleeves and digging in,” she said.
That’s what the couple is doing here.
The Pungo restaurant is having an Aloha Friday and all the net proceeds will be donated to Hope Chapel Maui.
“We want to be helping in any way we can to help the ‘Āina, as they say, the land heal, as it has a lot of healing to do,” Joe Johnson said.
They’re not the only ones stepping in to help.
Portsmouth-based Mercy Chefs is passing out food for survivors and volunteers on Maui.
A spokesperson for the company told 10 On Your Side crews are struggling with freezing temperatures but continue to pass out food where it’s needed.
Virginia Beach-based Operation Blessing has deployed staff from Hampton Roads to assist.
“There are boil notices. Schools are closed. There is a need for water. There is a need for clean water,” said Drew Friedrich, Operation Blessing’s Chief Operating Officer.
Operation Blessing is helping give out tarps, blankets, water purifiers and lamps to Hawaii residents.
“For a lot of people, the shelters are overwhelmed and there is not a great place to stay,” he said. “Having those small things like a light or a tarp to stay dry, … they make a big difference.”
You can support Operation Blessing’s mission by clicking here.
Mercy Chef is also accepting donations to help them in Hawaii. Click here to donate.
Aloha Friday at The Bee and The Biscuit starts at 7 a.m. Friday and goes until 2 p.m. For more information, click here.