Members must login to see members-only hikes
Hawaiian Trail & Mountain Corp.


ReGreen Lahaina: Maui Wildfire Donation Beneficiary

- by

In March 2024 HTMC donated funds collected for the Maui Wildfire Relief to ReGreen Lahaina. After the August 2013 Lahaina wildfire devastated the area Kai McPhee, a lifelong Lahaina resident founded the non-profit ReGreen Lahaina. Their mission is to re-seed, re-plant, and re-canopy our home town of Lahaina to restore health and hope to our community. 

Prior to the fire Kai and his family operated a coconut farm called Punakea Palms. They offered farm visits to promote coconut awareness which included everything from farming practices and coconut tastings to sharing the cultural significance of coconuts. Along with tours they ran a gift shop and cafe. 

Although his farm was damaged by the winds it survived the fire and he and his family managed to get out safely, but they lost their home and were devastated by the effects the fire had on the community and land. Kai founded ReGreen Lahaina to help his community and contribute to the healing process through channeling his love for nature.  

Kai built out a watering truck and would fill up daily and make his way to Lahaina in an effort to salvage the trees they could. He also welcomed anyone to join him that wanted to be involved in the process. Holding a hose in his hands, giving water and life back to Lahaina gave him and those who joined him hope for a better future. He shared, “We are going to need the plants back, but we also need to be a part of the process – getting our hands in the dirt.” 


As time goes on Kai has found ways to continue to be involved in community wide efforts; including growing plants that will eventually find their way back to Lahaina as they rebuild and regreen the town and its streets. Kai has been a beacon of hope for his community. HTMC’s donation to ReGreen Lahaina helped Kai maintain and run his watering truck. His next phase is to start a nursery for plants that will eventually contribute to the regreening of Lahaina.  

We reached out to Kai to let him know we were going to share his story with the HTMC members and he drafted the letter below.  

Aloha HTMC

My name is Kai McPhee, I am a lifelong resident of Lahaina and a proud member of a community that is going through indescribable trauma and permanent changes. I want to first say thank you from the bottom of our hearts for all the love and support that has been showered upon us throughout this process. Lahaina has always been a small bubble but it has been incredible to feel wrapped in the warmth of the broader surrounding community.

In September 2023 I started a movement called ReGreen Lahaina in an effort to find some sense of direction and healing when no other normalcy existed. Of the thousands of beautiful trees of Lahaina town, only about 25% initially survived the flames, and most that remained were critically wind damaged or baked dry. In the driest month of the year our trees desperately needed water. Energized by the prospect of making any kind of difference we pieced together makeshift water trucks and bluffed our way through security checkpoints to pirate water whatever we could get to in the burn zone. 

The impact our efforts have had on the individual trees is hard to measure. The current estimate of surviving trees in Lahaina is between 7-9%. That is devastating. But the impact that this cause has had on myself and everyone it has touched is the real mission. The mission is hope and to share that hope with everyone who needs it.

Thank you for helping to contribute to this mission through your generous donation. 



To learn more about donating to ReGreen Lahaina visit Give the Dream Foundation and Kai McPhee’s family coconut farm Punakea Palms. If you are going to be on Maui and would like to volunteer with ReGreen Lahaina, contact Kai McPhee via email or feel free to give him a call (808) 269-4455. 

Photo by Kai McPhee, ReGreen Lahaina.