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Financial Loʻi (Spring Session)

Waianae Economic Development Council

Wai‘anae, O‘ahu & Virtual

9-12, Post-high / College, Mākua & Kūpuna

Spring 2023

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Aloha my name is Joslynn and I signed up to partake in Financial Lo'i because sometimes dealing with finances and financial lingo can be a bit confusing. I feel that it was a very smart idea and very interesting how Financial Lo'i put a spin on things to where they can still get the point across while intertwining the Hawaiian culture into their teachings, things us Hawaiians/locals can relate to on a more realistic and relatable level. Although I financially really didn't need the help coming in, or so I thought, I am now working on boosting my credit score thanks to Financial Lo'i. Even if you think you don't need help, it never hurts to listen, it could lead to learning, refreshing, reengaging, or rearranging, for your own benefit. Thank you guys for the help, much aloha!

Joslynn Eli
Series 8
Started with 766 credit score and ended with 781.
She is working on taking her credit to 800 so she can buy a home very soon, at the best rate!


  • Outcome 3: A network of ‘ōiwi Leaders across aina based and educational institutions, community, and businesses exist to achieve common goals

  • Outcome 3 Measures:

  • 3.1 # of networks of ‘ōiwi leaders working towards common goals that your organization is a part of

  1. 1 network

  • 3.2 # of other partners involved in the network

  1. Waianae Moku Navigators, INPEACE, LT, and Waianae Comp, if we add Hawaii Entrepreneurs and Deep Fried Productions Hawaii

  • Narrative: Financial Loʻi provides a safe space for Native Hawaiians and other members of the community to learn and talk about finances from a cultural perspective. Our program provides individuals who represent a range of businesses, communities, and institutions a network to work towards similar financial goals. Participants get to know one another within Financial Loʻi workshops and get to know our workshop leaders and coaches through one-on-one coaching and credit repair. The program works to prepare participants to become knowledgeable and capable financial leaders of their ʻohana and learn from other ‘ohana while doing so. This network also extends beyond Financial Loʻi as many participants move on to other WEDC programming such as Maolipreneur, a culture-based business development series, and attend Entrepreneurs’ Hour, a series of financial and business workshops covering a range of topics.

  • Outcome 5: Native worldwide views, practices, and tools utilized in expanding interconnected ‘aina-based education

  • Outcome 5 Measure:

  • # of initiatives/projects utilizing native practices as foundational to their work.

  1. 1 initiative

  • Narrative: Financial Loʻi utilizes Hawaiian values, metaphors, and moʻolelo in its delivery of financial literacy knowledge and skills to cater to our target audience of Native Hawaiian individuals and families as well as other families that call Hawaiʻi home. Participants respond well to our use of native practices, with 17 out of 18 (94%) who took the post-survey saything that cultural values were helpful or extremely helpful in building their confidence to manage their own business. 66.7% said cultural values were extremely helpful. Relatedly, 88.9% said that moʻolelo were helpful or extremely helpful to building their confidence to manage their own business, with 61% saying moʻolelo was extremely helpful. One person who found both cultural values and moʻolelo to be extremely helpful to them said that their biggest takeaway from the program was “using Hawaiian culture instead of numbers to understand finances. It was easier to talk about it and think differently.” Another participant said, “The collaboration of financial jargon and the hawaiian culture intertwined in a such a way it came together and made more sense”

  • Outcome 6: Hawai’i is seen as a world leader in defining and affecting sustainability from an indigenous lens.

  • # of initiatives/projects that have demonstrated contributions to progress on sustainability.

  1. 1 initiative

  • Narrative: Native Hawaiians created systems for sustainability and efficiency in natural resource management of land resources like lo’i and sea resources like loko i’a. Financial Lo’i connects participants with ‘ike kupuna of pono resource management and sustainability to apply to the management of their financial resources in our modern-day environment the same way. One person explained how they were able to change their perspective on money and see it as a resource to steward. They said: “Money is just another resource for me to use. This was a shift in thinking. It's there for me to be a good steward of and I control it, it doesn't control me.”

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