KAHULUI, Hawaii - World-class ocean athlete and SIC Maui Global team rider Andrea Moller is excited to host the fourth annual Imua Keiki o ke Kai (Formerly ‘Ike Imua), a unique event to provide children with special needs an opportunity to bond and participate in ocean sports with a who’s who list of top professional water sports athletes on Sunday, April 3rd at the Hawaiian Canoe Club in Kahului, Maui. Imua Keiki o ke Kai is a pre-event to the long running BLUESMITHS Paddle Imua Maliko Downwind race. Camp Imua’s keiki will enjoy stand up paddling, double-hulled outrigger canoe paddling and Jet Ski rides during Imua Keiki o ke Kai.
Imua Keiki o ke Kai was inspired by Andrea Moller’s vision to offer the children of Camp Imua an opportunity to interact one-on-one with ocean athletes in a safe and supervised environment. The first Imua Keiki o ke Kai was held in 2013. Andrea invited the ocean athletes who participated in BLUESMITHS Paddle Imua the previous year to volunteer to help the children in the water. By doing so, Andrea believed the athletes would develop a deeper appreciation for how much BLUESMITHS Paddle Imua meant to the kids of Camp Imua. “I knew that once they had one-on-one time with the kids, they’d absolutely love them and their personalities. I figured they’d be motivated to be more involved just like I was,” said Andrea.
The inaugural Imua Keiki o ke Kai started small with about ten children and twenty volunteers. Most of the volunteers were Andrea’s friends who dedicated their time and resources. The volunteers all arrived on the beach early, each bringing a personal board to take a child paddling. Hawaiian Canoe Club lent their double hulled canoe and the rest was history. It was a simple day with huge results.
Imua Keiki O Ke Kai 2015. | Photo: Erik Aeder
Imua Keiki o ke Kai is actively seeking volunteers to assist with the 2016 event. Inquiries may be directed HERE. To learn more about BLUESMITHS Paddle Imua visit www.paddleimua.com. To be a part of the movement connect with us on Facebook, Twitter and Instagram at @paddleimua with the hashtag #ImuaKeiki
To see more news on Paddle Imua and Imua Keiki o ke Kai, click HERE.
About Imua Family Services
Since 1947, the nonprofit agency has been providing services to Maui's keiki with special needs, concerns and developmental delays. Imua Family Services empowers families and their children to reach their full potential. To learn more about Imua Family Services, visit www.imuafamilyservices.org or contact us at 808-244-7467.
About BLUESMITHS Paddle Imua: Saturday, May 7, 2016
A physical embodiment of the Hawaiian word Imua (‘to move forward’,) BLUESMITHS Paddle Imua began as a grassroots initiative to fund Camp Imua as it faced threat of elimination. Commemorating its 5th year in 2016, Paddle Imua continues to play a monumental role in keeping Camp Imua’s tradition alive. BLUESMITHS Paddle Imua is a one-of-kind mission based race with proceeds directly benefiting Imua Family Services’ Camp Imua program. www.paddleimua.com