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Health care on agenda for WCA (Nov. 7)


The possible affiliation of Queen’s Health Systems with North Hawaii Community Hospital (NHCH) will top Waimea Community Association’s (WCA) Town Meeting agenda at 5:15 p.m., Thurs., Nov. 7, 2013 in Waimea School cafeteria.

The entire community is invited to all WCA Town Meetings, and there is no charge for membership, though donations are encouraged to support the organization’s ongoing programs.

Queens Health Systems (Queen’s), corporate parent of the Queen’s Medical Center, recently entered into an agreement with NHCH to explore the possibility of a formal affiliation with NHCH.

In line with this, and in keeping with Queen’s recognition of the importance of reaching out to local communities to build positive relationships, being a good community partner, and investing in a healthy Hawaii, Art Ushijima, CEO of Queen’s, is planning a series of community forums in North Hawaii.

He will be conducting a community “talk story” as part of WCA’s November Town Meeting.

He also will be conducting two more community “talk stories” as follows:

* Hamakua – 5:30-7:30 p.m., Tuesday, Nov. 12 at North Hawaii Education and Research Center (NHERC). This will be hosted by Hamakua Health Center. For more information, call Sue DelaCruz at the Rural Outreach Services Room (775-0617).

* North Kohala – 5:30-7:30 p.m., Monday, Nov. 18 at Kohala High School Cafeteria. This wilol be hosted by Kahua Paa Mua, Inc. For more information, call Carol Fuertes (889-5391).

These community “talk stories” are part of their in-depth due diligence being conducted before moving forward.

“The community’s attendance and views are important to Queen’s and will help determine how Queen’s can best serve the growing health needs of North Hawaii and Hawaii Island and be a partner for healthy communities in our State,” WCA President Sherman Warner said.

While this month’s town meeting will be primarily dedicated to the Queen’s-NHCH talk-story, there will be brief update on this community’s now-annual Big Island Giving Tree (BIGT) holiday project, which ensures that our working poor families – especially the children – and our kupuna are remembered during the Christmas season.

BIGT will launch its ingathering of donations Thursday, Dec. 5 with a festive tree lighting with caroling, entertainment and a light dinner offering at Parker School, and everyone is invited. BIGT is closely integrated into the 53rd Annual Waimea Christmas Twilight Parade and all-day celebration Saturday, Dec. 7, too.

BIGT welcomes donations and also invites community members, churches, clubs, businesses and families to consider adopting a family or a child. Applications are being accepted for individuals or families who might need this extra support during the holidays.

For more details including an applications for the BIGT and the famous Waimea Christmas Twilight Parade with its brigade of festively decorated trucks and, of course, Santa, go to WCA’s website:

As always at WCA Town Meetings, fresh hot coffee will be provided by Starbucks. Attendees are urged to support Waimea’s Food Pantry with cash or checks (receipts always available) and/or with non-perishable foods and/or extra produce including citrus, greens and avocados. Anyone with these extra food items who is unable to attend the WCA meeting is urged to deliver their donation to the Annunciation Church office during business hours.

Info: WCA President Sherman Warner (885-1725) or Patti Cook (937-2833) or go to

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