CHICOPEE, Mass. (WWLP) – Fires continue to devastate the Hawaiian island of Maui, and many people here on the mainland are wondering how they can help.

Images of what used to be paradise, charred by fire. Maui, a place that Heather Newalu of Suffield, CT, once called home, and filled with decades of family history, now reduced to ash.

“We call the land Āina, and the rich culture, and its all been gone in a matter of seconds,” said Newalu. Newalu’s family is safe on the island of Oahu, but as the death toll and reported missing climbs, she waits everyday from the mainland, to hear updates from friends and loved ones still on Maui, some on the front lines fighting the fires.

Heather adding, “If people have never had the chance to experience true Aloha, these people, the seconds after this happened have been working together to do whatever they can to help other people.” That resilience, inspiring Newalu to donate what she can to Maui all the way from the East Coast.

That generosity also being seen right here in western Massachusetts, “I’ve sent a letter to all of the parishes in the Dioceses asking for them to take up a special collection because it is so sad completely devastated,” says Bishop William Byrne of the Diocese of Springfield.

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If you are interested in helping out the thousands of people impacted by those devastating wildfires in Maui, 22News is working for you with a link, and QR code to the American Red Cross, which is collecting donations.

Local News

Kristina D’Amours is a reporter who is a part of the evening 22News team. Follow Kristina on X @KristinaD_WWLP and view her bio to see more of her work.