Island News–Lava Crisis Spawns Host of New FB Pages

Puna residents seem to have learned something from Tropical Storm Iselle, when social network pages such as “Iselle Recovery Assistance: Offers and Requests” proved a vital tool in the recovery effort. Iselle Recovery Assistance remains active, both as a communications tool for the continuing recovery efforts after the storm and as a networking tool for coping with Puna’s lava crisis. And it’s been joined by several Facebook sites devoted to various aspects of the eruption and its effects on lower Puna. Below are some of them, with their membership as of this morning and their mission statements:

Puna Unification: We Stay! (494 members): “Group for those who want to stay in touch with the flow of the Lava and create more unity in the event of getting cutoff or much longer route. Let’s work together and help each other out!
We can share info here on what is going on, pictures, requests and ideas for a more self-sufficient Puna.”

Lavaocean Transport (204 members): “With the probability of hwy 130 being cut off by the current lava flows we are proposing an ocean transportation service from Pohoiki to Hilo. Our Armstrong Marine built 40ft catamaran can transport 49 people in comfort at a time from Pohoiki to Hilo 1 1/2 hour ride each way.”

Puna Temporary Relocation (32 members): “For now this page is for networking between people who have B&B and vacation rental units that they are willing to rent out on a week to week basis to people being displaced in Puna. We are working on getting an exemption created for GE and Tourism tax. Also, creating guidelines for making sure Lessees are actually being displaced and keeping Lessors from charging inflated rates. We are also looking into existing booking sites that will offer a listing page and insurance for the landlords. A lot to do, but hopefully it comes together!”

Puna Disaster Group (163 members): “This group is for the sole purpose of keeping residents and friends apprised of the events that could impact Puna. Please – No unrelated rants, religion, politics or trolling will be allowed. Posts found not to conform to this group’s standards will be removed.”

Puna Disaster& Relief (698 members): “This group is for all in need and are offering help for others either from storm, lava or just in general. And for those needing help a place to post their needs.”

PunaLava Updates (244 members): This group hasn’t filed an “about” statement, but the title is self-explanatory.

Kokua Puna! (102 members): “Information about drop off/pick up sites, donations, and spreading aloha to our community of Puna!”

Puna Ride Share (9 members): “This group is in response to the need to reduce/reuse and recycle of our resources. there will be alot of folks needing to go to Hilo for various reasons… why not share our resources? Folks who offer rides can ask for donations for gas, thus cutting the costs for everyone!” (Ed. note: ‘Not sure if this group was founded in response to the lava threat, but if the emergency routes need to be used, ride-sharing will certainly be useful.)

Puna Area (pele) Lava Assistance/help (54 members): “I created this site for people of puna/pahoa/ kalapana needing help moving, relocating animals or any questions or need information…
We all need to Help each other & one another in our community….”

Lava Flow Support Network: Help or Be Helped (517 members: “This page is dedicated to the spirit of aloha- Post emergency projects, service or supplies; either needed or available. A True Unification project brought to you by Pele.”

Lava Awe Hawaii (1,587 members): This group has three rules: 1. Honor Pele. As I write this the lava is approaching many people’s backyards, However it is often inaccessible, so not everyone can make an offering to Pele. Write your posts in this group with respect to her. Consider each of your words in this group to be an offering…. 2. Help one another.As the lava approaches – let the group know your needs. Let’s help each other prepare for our host Pele to claim her land (which we live on)…. 3. Friendship and awareness. Since this is Lava Awe Hawaii (not Lava Fight Hawaii), make each post in reverence and respect for one another….
In this group we promote and believe in open access to the lava for worship, sustenance, and the spiritual growth. We also respect and encourage following laws of the land to gain access…. (Ed. note: This group’s statement was too long to include in its entirety. For more, see the site.)

Kapoho Disaster Preparedness (15 members): “To work together as a community – and help friends, neighbors and family.”
#Lavahhousing and #Lavarideshare (57 members): “Helping Puna help one another!!! Post Carpool Requests using hashtag or code #carpool. Post housing requests or offers using hashtag #housing.”

If you know of other groups, please share them in a comment.

–Alan McNarie

6 replies
  1. Denise
    Denise says:

    Hi Alan

    Couple points:
    Puna Disaster Relief is actually called Puna Disaster & Relief.

    Please add Lava Flow Support Network; Help or be helped to the list (517 members) and Lava Awe Hawaii (1500+ members).

    Also of note, the role of social media in disasters will be the featured talk at this month’s #TechTuesday hosted by Hawaii Techworks. Pattie Hickey Rechtman, Cody Osborne and Denise Laitinen will be among the speakers at the Sept. 30 5:30 pm event discussing how social media played an important role in helping area residents after Iselle, and now during the lava flow crisis.

  2. NeighborWatch
    NeighborWatch says:

    Puna Disaster Preparedness Group

    Is for Puna Residents ONLY..

    Must be a Puna resident, and it needs to reflect that on your profile some where. Under your name is best, two dozen requests a day are ignored because people aren’t prepared to use FB. Don’t have time to field tourist and spectator questions.

    If you’re a business in Kona looking for clients among Puna residents you probably won’t get in the group.

    Be advised that Social Media is part of the WEB, which is a very sticky place. The higher the numbers of members on a Facebook group the more FAKE members, scammers and China, Azerbaijani or Ugandan Troll Bot Phisherman there are. What? you didn’t understand that? Just remember GOOGLE Search is your friend.

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