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Kuikahi Mediation Center receives $5K from Cooke Foundation


The nonprofit Kuikahi Mediation Center received a $5,000 grant from the Cooke Foundation to launch a school peer mediation program in East Hawaii.

During the 2014-2015 school year, 40 fourth and fifth graders were trained how to mediate disputes among students at Laupahoehoe Community Public Charter School (LCPCS).

“Kuikahi is thrilled to partner with LCPCS for our East Hawaii Peer Mediation Elementary School Pilot Project,” said Kuikahi Executive Director Julie Mitchell. “The school director, Alapaki Nahale-a, and the school counselor, Karen Lee Holderman, are both trained mediators who fully support the program.”

In 2010, the state Department of Education Safe Schools Community Advisory Committee established several recommendations to address conflict in the schools, including establishing a school community culture that creates and encourages an environment of safety and respect.

Through peer mediation, students learn to work effectively with their schoolmates to facilitate positive outcomes.

Students in conflict can request mediation or be referred by staff or other students.

Mediators work in pairs and help disputants reach and document agreements that are safe, fair, and doable.

Peer mediation is both a program and a process where students of the same age-group facilitate resolving disputes between two people or small groups. This process has proven effective in schools around the United States and in Hawaii, changing the way students understand and resolve conflict in their lives.

Changes include improved self-esteem, listening and critical thinking skills, and school climate for learning, as well as reduced disciplinary actions and fewer fights.

These skills are transferable outside of the classroom.

“We are grateful to be partnering with West Hawaii Mediation Center (WHMC) to extend their successful Working it Out! school peer mediation program into East Hawaii,” Mitchell said. “By utilizing WHMC’s skills and expertise, Kuikahi will build on WHMC’s proven 10-year track record in delivering conflict resolution training to schools in North and West Hawaii.”

Kuikahi Mediation Center’s mission is to empower people to come together – to talk and to listen, to explore options, and to find their own best solutions.

To achieve this mission, Kuikahi offers mediation, facilitation, and training to strengthen the ability of diverse individuals and groups to resolve interpersonal conflicts and community issues.

For more information, call Kuikahi at 935-7844

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