The Edith Kanakaʻole Foundation (EKF) is a Hawaiian cultural-based non-profit 501(c)(3) organization established in 1990 to maintain and perpetuate the teachings, beliefs, practices, philosophies, and traditions of the late Luka and Edith Kanakaʻole. EKF’s mission is to elevate Hawaiian intelligence through cultural education founded on the teachings and traditional practices of Edith and Luka Kanakaʻole.
EKF possesses a high level of Hawaiian cultural knowledge and skills relating to land and resource practices as well as cultural site restoration, protocol, and ritual. Our programs benefit the native Hawaiian community through cultural immersion activities, research, and development of curriculum materials. In addition, we provide scholarships for native Hawaiian students, cultural workshops, restoration of culturally significant places and practices, and consultation on several government and private contracts that require Hawaiian cultural and spiritual expertise.
EKF continues the legacy of Mrs. Edith Kanakaʻole (d. 1979), an indigenous Hawaiian woman recognized by indigenous Hawaiians, the people of Hawaiʻi, and the State of Hawaiʻi as the preeminent practitioner of modern Hawaiian culture and language. One part of the legacy of Mrs. Kanakaʻole includes Hālau o Kekuhi, the internationally acclaimed hālau hula (dance school). In 1996, the Office of Hawaiian Affairs deemed the hālau and its teachers Living Hawaiian Treasures in recognition of the depth of native Hawaiian traditional culture that hula requires, such as education in genealogy, use of indigenous plants for making and decorating garments, protocol in the collection of plants, and deep insight into all aspects of Hawaiian language, culture, and history for the proper interpretation of chants and dance.