What Lights Us Up?

Here you'll find some of the ways we engage, ignite, inspire and empower children and adults to become the creators of their own heART-filled stories! 

We are Finalists for a 2024 Nā Hōkū Hānohano Award!!

Congratulations to all the Finalists for the 2024 Nā Hōkū Hānohano Awards!! All of us at When We Shine Foundation are over the moon thrilled, honored, excited and sooo grateful that our Album, Nā Leo O Ka Honua, Endangered Species, is also among the prestigious nominations for a Hoku Award for Island Music Album of the Year!! Three years in the making, each song was co-written by the Keiki of Pomaikaʻi Elementary School and features their words, melodies and voices along with Artist Mentors, Raiatea Helm and Moanalani Beamer! David Kauahikaua and I had the honor of co-producing this very important project that highlights the Aloha and the need for protection of our ʻĀina and for all the sentient beings who share our precious lands. Through our non-profit organization, When We Shine, and our music production label, Shine Media Productions, we are dedicated to bringing music arts back into our schools! Please take a listen. We want the whole world to hear our island stories and concerns through the songs and voices of our children. On behalf of the Keiki, Mahalo Nui for your kind consideration of our efforts!

The Project

Singers of Aloha Choir - Music as Community Service

Our Pomaikaʻi Performance Choir was established upon the need for healing, optimism, and resilience in our community after the tragedy of the Maui fires August 8, 2023. The fires which took 100+ lives and destroyed over 2,000 homes and businesses have had a deeply traumatic effect on our Maui Island people, still struggling to recover physically, mentally and emotionally. When We Shine Foundation wanted to find a way serve our community, to help lift and inspire our island families. We realized song and music especially with childrenʻs voices, felt like the right way to begin. So on January 11, 2024, When We Shine Foundation started a new Choir at Pomaikaʻi Elementary School with Melinda Caroll as Choir Director with 30 3rd, 4th and 5th Grade students, to start a new choir singing together to lift their voices in song. The new Choir students promptly named themselves, Singers of Aloha.

The Project

Nā Leo O Ka Honua, Endangered Species

August 15, 2023, WAILUKU, MAUI - When We Shine Foundation is proud to announce the digital release of our latest song collection by Voices of the Earth, ‘Vol. 3, Nā Leo O Ka Honua, Endangered Species.’ In partnership with Pomaikaʻi Elementary School on Maui, the project began in the fall of 2019 and the written songs were completed on March 20, 2020, the day the world shut down from Covid. Over the last 2 years producers were able to take the voices of Maui students from 1st thru 5th grade and mash them up with notable Hawaii artists like Neal Chin, Moanalani Beamer, and Raiatea Helm. All twenty songs are available now, streaming on all digital platforms

The Project

Arts & ʻĀina Explorations 2023

From June 12th thru June 15th, 2023, When We Shine Foundation hosted our very first training for teachers. Not your typical professional development program where you sit in an auditorium or classroom listening to speakers and hold discussions. Oh no. This was an Arts and ʻĀina Explorations immersion experience that included hands-on, full body, mind and heart participation. Each day was a new adventure, an unfolding of knowledge, collaboration and inspiration that builds deeper community understanding and purpose.

The Project


Our latest project is in collaboration with The World Association of
Girl Guides and Girl Scouts (WAGGGS)
, a global organization made up of 10 million members in 150 countries. In the Fall of 2022, the Juliette Low Seminar (JLS) leadership team of WAGGGS, proposed a songwriting project with a group of 30 of their hopeful young female leaders ages, 18 to 30, who are preparing to take the helm in their own communities. These young women Zoomed from far places that included Myanmar, Malawi, Sierra Leone, Pakistan, Costa Rica, Nigeria, Ireland, Australia, Madagascar, Trinidad, Egypt and more, and worked in partnership with When We Shine Foundation, to create, to record and present their 2023 theme song to their global members, We Are Movement.

Nuestro Valle, Everyone Belongs

“...Everyone Belongs! Our Table is Long and Thereʻs Music and Song!” These are Lyrics from our new song, “Nuestro Valle, Everyone Belongs” written by Mid-Valley Elementary 4th Graders in Odell, Oregon. 

In October, 2022, Team Shine was invited by Shelley Toon Lindberg to collaborate with her non-profit, Arts Education of the Gorge(AEIG), at a local bi-lingual school. Our arts Integration team went to work!

The Project

Living Hawaiian Style, Iao Middle School Legacy Project

In the spring of 2022, ʻĪao Intermediate 6th graders of team Makaliʻi participated in a Legacy project, interviewing parents and elders in our community and on ʻĪao school campus to find out what their thoughts are on why growing up on Maui and living here is so special.

The Project

Hana Days Gone By (Aunty Punaʻs Song) "our Kūpuna and the ʻĀina Project

The Pilot program for our Project Series, OUR KŪPUNA AND THE ʻĀINA, began in Hana, Maui, It was born from the need to re-connect and build community starting with our most vulnerable members, our Kūpuna and our Keiki. Our goal was to introduce inter-generational story-telling as a way to spotlight life values and place-based learning, combining traditional story-telling with digital multi-media that Keiki enjoy today.

The Project

The Living Earth, Songs from Our Garden to Yours!

A Song-writing residency with the entire Pomaika'i Elementary School, the LIVING EARTH album, Vol. 1 Voices of the Earth Artist series, was newly released in March of 2022. It is a re-branding of an original project in 2018, created with the inspiring students and teachers of Pomaika’I Elementary School, the only Arts Integrated Public School in the state of Hawaiʻi. Located in the Waikapu District of Maui, their teachers chose a school theme for their 2017-2018 school year, “the wellness of the ʻāina (land) is the wellness of the people.”

The project

Kahoʻolawe, The Dream of an Island

In 2022, we rebranded a beloved music album project that began in 2019 with the 4th grade students of Pomaikaʻi Elementary School. They worked with teaching artist, Shelley Toon Lindberg to create an iStop Motion recap on the History of Kahoʻolawe.

At the same time, When We Shine Foundation and Friends of Pomaikaʻi sponsored a songwriting residency project with the same theme with Melinda Caroll to bring the story into even deeper focus.



A Keiki Covid Campaign: music and animated video with Pomaika'i and Kula Elementary Schools.

April-December 2021

The project

THE EARTH IS OURS TO MĀLAMA, Kula Elementary School, Keiki Covid Campaign

The Earth is Ours to Malama was created as a Keiki Covid Campaign project by When We Shine Foundation. Please enjoy our music and animated video written, sung and created by Voices of the Earth artists, Kula Elementary School 4th Grade students! This project was made possible by a generous grant by The Fred Baldwin Memorial Foundation. We are grateful for their kind support!

Watch the video

Kaho'olawe, The Heart and Soul of Hawai'i

Music and animated video project with Pomaika'i Elementary School.

When We Shine Foundation is proud to present this historical video and hope that after viewing it, that you will have a new understanding of Kahoʻolawe, The Heart and Soul of Hawaiʻi.

Watch the video

Voices of the Earth, The Artists of our Project Series

We have a New Band and we have a New Brand!! VOICES OF THE EARTH is the name we give our Keiki Artists who participate in writing, singing and creating our music videos. They speak for those who cannot speak for themselves. They are the storytellers and the voices in our songs. Though we are based in the island of Maui, in the state of Hawaiʻi, our songs are written live and virtually from and in any location in the world!

Check Out Our YouTube Channel

Share the Light, A Peace-Building Virtual Song and Music Video

A virtual songwriting/recording and music video project in partnership with The World Association of Girl Guides and Girl Scouts (WAGGGS).

April-July 2020 

The Project

Na Maka O Ka 'Aina

The Eyes of the Land Project with Pomaika'i Elementary School.


The Project

Manawahine Wai

Walk for Water Project.

May 2017

The project