Ten Hawaii nonprofit organizations are being challenged to “pay it forward” in their communities using $10,000 awards from the Hawai‘i Medical Service Association. HMSA employees nominated and voted for the organizations as part of the company’s 75th anniversary celebration.
Each organization in the HMSA Pays It Forward campaign is being asked to take their $10,000 award and use it to inspire their staff, their volunteers, and the people they serve to take action and make a difference for others around them. HMSA will follow the organizations throughout the year and announce each of their accomplishments in December.
“Year after year, HMSA employees show by example just how important it is to give back to their communities. They volunteer their time organizing drives, rally their co-workers by creating competitions, and reach into their own pockets to help those less fortunate,” says HMSA President and Chief Executive Officer Michael A. Gold. Last year, HMSA employees were recognized in Hawaii Business when their charitable contributions put HMSA among the top of the Hawaii’s list of most charitable companies. “It’s only fitting that our employees should be the ones to decide which organizations would have the biggest impact helping people here in Hawaii,” Gold says.
HMSA employees submitted their nominations in early March. Voting took place over a 10-day period that ended on April 5. A total of $100,000 will be given to the following organizations:
Hawaii Meals on Wheels (Oahu)
Epilepsy Foundation of Hawaii (Oahu)
Hawaii County Economic Opportunity (Hawaii)
Puna Community Medical Center (Hawaii)
Planned Parenthood of Hawaii (Kauai)
Na Maka o Papahanaumokuakea (Hawaii)
Pacific Cancer Foundation (Maui)
Lanai Community Health Center (Lanai)
Ka Honua Momona (Molokai)
Kukui Ahi Patient Program at Molokai General Hospital (Molokai)
The winning organizations knew that they were nominated for the award, but the Pay It Forward committee wanted to surprise each group by personally delivering an oversized check and a large bouquet of balloons to say congratulations and to thank the organizations in a grand way for their ongoing commitment to their communities.
“Our employees wanted to find a way to really stretch this gift and I’m confident this concept of paying it forward will accomplish that,” says Gold. “Experience has taught us that innovation and partnerships are the keys to success. This campaign is giving us new opportunities to improve the health and well-being of our members, their families, and their communities.”
Caring for the people of Hawaii is our promise and our privilege. Working together with employers, partners, physicians and other health care providers, we promote wellness; develop reliable, affordable health plans; and support members with clear, thoughtful guidance.
HMSA is the most experienced health plan in the state, covering more than half of Hawaii’s population. As a recognized leader, we embrace our responsibility to strengthen the health and well-being of our community.
Headquartered on Oahu with centers statewide to serve our members, HMSA is an independent licensee of the Blue Cross and Blue Shield Association.