DANA (pronounced Donna) is a Sanskrit word that is defined as selfless giving of time and energy; providing compassion and care without the desire for recognition or expression of appreciation. Dana is not someone’s name, or an acronym. Dana is an expression of love, compassion, faith, and caring.

Project Dana began 34 years ago at Moiliili Hongwanji Mission, guided by the vision of two forward-thinking women, Shimeji Kanazawa and Rose Nakamura. Together they created an interfaith, volunteer caregivers program and called it Project Dana (the name was given by Dr. Ruth Tabrah, a well-known Buddhist scholar). Their program would consist of compassionate and trained volunteers offering social support to elders in the community.

Examples of social supportive services offered by these dedicated volunteers are: friendly visits, respite, grocery shopping assistance, and transportation to essential visits such as doctor’s,  therapy, or dental appointments. Some sites on Maui and the Island of Hawai‘i offer senior activity days, when the elder is dropped off to enjoy the day while socializing, and breaking up the  isolation experienced while home alone.

Friendly doctor examining health of patient at home. Happy smiling nurse consulting disabled patient about treatment. Nurse caring about elder handicap woman at home.The sites of Project Dana are led by dedicated site leaders, many of whom have been in that role for 20 years. Project Dana also offers programs to address specific community needs, coordinated by excellent, well trained, highly educated and knowledgeable people. The coordinators have many years of experience in their areas of expertise.

Caring for the Caregiver

This program focuses on services to family caregivers and soon-to-be caregivers. These services include public presentations, support groups, counseling and training. The goal of the program is to help alleviate the stress that comes with continuous caregiving responsibilities.

Fall Prevention Assessment Program

The goals of this program are to: increase awareness of fall prevention, create a safe home environment, enable elders to continue independently at home, assist in establishing quality of life for elders, and identify any potential injury risk factors.

The expressions of appreciation below are priceless words that make Dana a Joy!

Giving and Receiving

“Mr. K’s impact on my elderly mother goes far beyond the tasks of bringing groceries, as important as that is. He listened to my mother and made her feel known and valued. Without his help and the support of Project Dana, she would have been unable to live in her own home during those last difficult years.”
~Grateful daughter of an elder

“Being a Project Dana volunteer, I have discovered that those of us who “help” ultimately become recipients of invaluable life lessons. Thank you, Project Dana, for the opportunity to serve and learn.”
~Anonymous Project Dana volunteer

PROJECT DANA (501(c) 3 nonprofit)
902 University Ave., Honolulu, HI 96826
808-945-3736 | info@projectdana.org