Olelo Community Media

LaRose’s Jam Experience

Since 2019, ‘Ōlelo Community Media has been fostering a youth after school media program called Junior Academy for Media (JAM). The Middle and High school aged student participants received assistance with homework, introduction to media literacy, storyboarding and storytelling, basic video production training and certification, and soft skills (resume and interviewing, etc.) training. The program is offered at our six community-based Media Service Centers throughout O‘ahu. Below is an essay written by Waipahu-based JAM student LaRose Colquitt on her experiences with the program.

My JAM Experience 

Aloha I’m LaRose Colquitt, a 2020 graduate from Radford High school. I was born and raised in Hawaii. Some of my interests in school were, and still are: film, art, animation, and acting. Listen, we have a treasure here, Olelo’s youth JAM program.

In the summer of 2019, I started with Olelo’s JAM program. I discovered the youth JAM program when my family attended an orientation that Olelo hosted. Then I got my parents to sign me up for the program. I am excited to let you know where you can find the JAM program, it’s easy, by going to their website or asking your school counselor.

For youth interested in filming, storytelling, editing and any studio work, You want to go to Olelo’s website. You can gain organization and time management skills to complete your projects or tell your story. You can get connected to the people in the industry and to the community through Olelo’s JAM program. You will get hands-on experience and your confidence will go up.

The JAM program is a one year commitment. The Olelo’s JAM instructors are great. They are very knowledgeable and patient, they will help you develop skills with the camera, scriptwriting, editing, and so much more around and outside the studio. You will have a great time meeting new people around your age and working with them as a team. Olelo offers so much, I can’t tell it all so go to the website and check it out.  https://olelo.org/


For more information on Junior Academy for Media, visit olelo.org/jam

Innovative Engagement: Managing a Media Service Center During a Pandemic

At the end of March 2020, just like every other business in Hawai‘i,Ōlelo was forced to radically alter our operations, while still fulfilling our mandated duties as Oahu’s non-profit public, education, and government access provider. In accordance with the lockdown of DOE campuses, Ōlelo’s 5 campus-based Media Service Centers – Kaimukī, Kāneʻohe, Nānākuli, Wahiawā, and Waipahu  have all been temporarily relocated to our Māpunapuna headquarters, utilizing makeshift socially distant office spaces throughout the building.  

With that change came a set of adjustments for both the staff and the public. All of the centers adopted unified, but limited, office hours. Production equipment can still be checked out and hard drives with shows for air can still be turned in. However, members of the public are not allowed inside the building; all interactions are by appointment and “curbside” only. Also, Basic Media Training and one-on-one mentoring are now done mostly virtually via Microsoft Teams 

During down time, Media Services staff are invited to be crewmembers on various facilitated productions to keep their own skills fresh. These productions include Ōlelo’s virtually recorded Signature series Live at the Legislature and Island Focus, as well as the daily legislative hearings recorded at the state capitol.  Some staff members are also given editing duties for our new virtual PSA service for community organizations called Giving Voice. 

Fast forward six months from the lockdown. Our Media Services staff are continuing to strengthen our island voices and advance community engagement through innovative media”, as our mission statement says.  

Ōlelo is currently working with the DOE on creating a plan to get the centers open again by developing a Standard Operating Procedure (SOP) that is in line with each school’s guidelines.  

In the meantime, how can we continue to engage with our clients and still be innovative? 

To keep his Junior Academy for Media (JAM) students active, Waipahu Media Services Manager Neal Rivera has been working on a unique curriculum. Neal states, “Going into JAM: Year 2, we are training students on how to record themselves doing virtual interviews/news programs and ultimately producing a show on their COVID experience.

Neal predicts that when their center finally opens again on the campus of Waipahu Intermediate School, availability of staff and services will still be limited to safely interact with the public. Mentoring over the phone and online submissions will still be the prime method of engagement, which may not be a terrible thing. 

“One positive aspect of this whole new normal is that by having virtual mentoring sessions, we are allowing our clients to engage with all of our staff members as opposed to staff from a specific location,” Neal explains. The clients are getting a vast array of expertise and the staff are experiencing perspectives they’ve never had before.”

For a final message of hope to his clients, Neal says, “Even though our services are limited, we are still here for you. We are working on ways to expand and reach people virtually, which is really speaking to our mission about innovative media.” 

CLICK HERE to read an essay written by one of Neal’s JAM students about the program.

Top: Managers Mana Franquez and Neal Rivera social distancing in the screening room.
Bottom: One of the many safety signs at Māpunapuna.


Every month, ‘Ōlelo Community Media will be joining First Lady of Hawai‘i Dawn Amano-Ige to bring you Conversations with the First Lady, a monthly series for children and families. In this thirty-minute show, she will be reading you some of her favorite children’s stories followed by a conversation with a community leader.

Watch the first episode here:

Below you will find some behind-the-scenes photos from the first day of shooting on location at the historic Washington Place.

PEG (Public, Education, and Government) access television was a portal for information long before the topic of government transparency became trendy. For 30 years, ‘Ōlelo Community Media has been delivering local government and institutional transparency to the television sets, desktop computers, and mobile devices of O‘ahu’s community members. Check out our current programming produced in partnership with the State Legislature.

Daily Legislative Hearings & Meetings 

Through a contract issued by the State of Hawai‘i, ‘Ōlelo has an equipment control room and a dedicated team of staff operating out of the heart of the State Capitol, broadcasting live legislative hearings and meetings on a daily basis. The hearings and meetings that get air time are selected by the State Clerk’s office and are also made available to view online shortly after they have aired.

A schedule of the hearings and meetings to be aired on our channels can be found at olelo.org/leg.

Live at the Legislature

​Live at the Legislature is a live half-hour weekly news program that focuses on the issues, legislation, and topics of importance emerging from this year’s Legislative Session.  Each week, State Senators and Representatives provide a variety of perspectives on the issues from both sides of the aisle. Tune in to Live at the Legislature on Tuesdays at 8:30 AM  (LIVE) and Wednesdays at 7:00 PM on ‘Ōlelo channel 49.

CLICK HERE to view episodes from the current session.



Talk Story with House Majority

House Majority Leader Della Au Belatti conducts timely virtual interviews with State officials, community leaders, and fellow legislators about how the State is dealing with the COVID-19 pandemic. Some notable guests include Governor David Ige, Brigadier General Moses Kaoiwi, Dr. Melinda Ashton, Dr. Sarah Park and Hawai‘i Attorney General Clare Connors. Rep. Belatti also showcases State departments and community organizations in her “Community Spotlight” segments.

Followers of ‘Ōlelo’s Facebook page can interact with Rep. Belatti by submitting questions when the show streams live on Wednesdays from 8:30 AM to 9:30 AM. You can also catch the show airing on ‘Ōlelo channel 49.

The final episode is slated to air on July 15, 2020, but you can CLICK HERE to view all episodes of the series.


Want alerts for LIVE government programming? Conveniently watch any these programs anytime, anywhere on your phone by downloading ‘Ōlelo’s mobile app FREE via the App Store or Google Play. Scan this QR code to be directed straight to the App Store or Google Play.



Ōlelo’s bi-monthly series Island Focus is the proud recipient of the “Informational Talk Show Series – Access Center Professional” category award for the Alliance for Community Media’s Hometown Media Awards 2020!

Island Focus is a monthly half-hour television series produced by ‘Ōlelo Community Media as a community service. The show features exclusive interviews with members of our government, business, education, and community sectors and talk about their passions, what’s new, and what impact they’ve made.

“Focused on the personalities behind the organizations, industries, and agencies that keep Oʻahu moving, that’s Island Focus,” says host Lyla Berg. “We get to highlight the passion and influence of both the people and places that inspire, inform and impact our everyday lives.”  

The specific award-winning episode was recorded at Sea Life Park Hawaiʻi and features:
  • Sea Life Park Animal Curator Jeff Pawloski
  • Hawaiian Monk Seal Preservation Ohana Executive Director Dana Jones
  • Kaiwi Coast Run & Walk Education Director Carol Jaxon
  • Hanauma Bay Education Program Education Specialist Anne Rosa
  • Hui O Ko’olaupoko Volunteer Coordinator Jamie Miller  

Congratulations to the staff and volunteers who helped bring the episode to life:

Host – Lyla Berg
Executive Producer – Sanford Inouye
Producer – Angela Angel
Director – Jon Wong
Cinematographer – Kekoa Graham
Camera – Alex Miyamoto, Scott Nordquist
Jib Camera/Sound Engineer – Donovan Smith
Audio – Brandee Lima
Steadicam Operator/Editor – Deron Kamisato
Still Photographer – Ed Tsang
Makeup Artist – Vanessa Li
Production Coordinator – Jo-Lynn Domingo
Graphics – Dane Neves
Promotions – Jack Bates
You can view the full episode here:

Island Focus premieres on ‘Ōlelo Channel 53, first and third Wednesday of every month at 6:30pm, and Sundays at 4:30pm. You can also find Island Focus on ‘Ōlelo VOD Channel 52, ‘ŌleloNet and YouTube. To see all of this year’s Island Focus episodes, CLICK HERE.

The Alliance for Community Media is a national membership organization that advocates, promotes and preserves the right to media training, production, distribution, civic engagement and education in support of diverse community voices, through Public, Educational and Government Access channels and other forms of media. For more information about the ACM’s Hometown Media Awards, CLICK HERE.
You can view the ACM Hometown Media Awards virtual show in its entirety here (our award category starts at the 43-minute mark):


As some of you may have heard, longtime ‘Ōlelo producer and friend Jim Brewer recently passed away.

We extend our heartfelt condolences to his wife Renee Ing, other family and friends.

Jim became an ‘Ōlelo community producer in 1994, launching a series called “Employees Today.” In March of this year, he had completed the 100th show of his current series, “Full Democracy.”

Jim was very much an activist in the community, standing up for the little guy. As a member of the Green Party, he ran for various government offices – most recently for governor in 2018.

His beliefs were strongly held, and his passion for people and justice were unparalleled. Jim was always a kind and thoughtful gentleman. We at ‘Ōlelo will miss him greatly.

Māpunapuna’s modified hours (by appointment only, 24 hours in advance)
Monday – Friday 9:30am to 6:30pm
Please call us at (808) 237-2140 or email us to make an appointment to drop off programs or pick up equipment.


The new normal inside our Māpunapuna location.

UPDATE 8-25-20

To Our Valued Members,

We hope you are healthy and safe during this trying time. We will be extending our adjusted operations from August 27th until  September 10th  to stay in compliance with the August 25th, 2020 stay-at-home order. We have put precautions in place to keep everyone safe. As a reminder, our procedures are as follows:

  • Hours of Operations for all Media Service Centers are  Monday through Friday from 9:30 AM to 6:30 PM.
  • BY APPOINTMENT ONLY – No walk-ins will be allowed.
  • Appointments to be made at least 24 hours in advance.
  • All Media Centers are operating out of our  Māpunapuna location at  1122  Māpunapuna  Street.
  • All interactions will take place OUTSIDE the facility.
  • A face mask is REQUIRED for all face-to-face interactions.

If you have any questions about submitting your content for air, please contact your Media Service Center. The most effective way to contact us is by email.

Mahalo and stay safe!

‘Ōlelo Community Media


Some messages from our Media Service Center staff:

“We look forward to seeing you all in our centers again soon.  For now, drink more water and watch something interesting (our suggestion: Gordon Ramsey).” – Kaimukī

“Let’s keep our distance, but continue to tell our stories.” – Nānākuli


“Stay hopeful, stay motivated, stay safe.” While you shelter in place, Waipahu Intermediate and the ‘Ōlelo Staff is working hard at getting a new floor in the Studio.

A new mobile app for Ōlelo Community Media has just been launched with the goal to bring public access into the palm of your hand.   

Users anywhere in the world can now stream Ōlelo’s four channels in real time or access our online video archives, making it easy to watch local programs created by you, your friends, and your neighbors. Push notifications can be enabled for live programming such as legislative hearings, city council meetings, conferences, concerts, and more. Local O‘ahu residents can also stream the City and County of Honolulu’s live traffic cam feeds in real time and access ‘Ōlelo’s client resource tool to sign up for training and manage equipment/facility reservations.   

With this app, members of Ōlelo can access our client resource to sign up for training and manage their own equipment/facility reservations.  While we hope this online resource provides a convenient method for our members to engage with ‘Ōlelo, we continuously welcome you to contact any of our 6 Media Service Centers around the island for assistance. 

‘Ōlelo’s Mobile App is now available to download FREE via the App Store or Google Play.

This week, our marketing department has premiered a brand new TV spot promoting ‘Ōlelo’s vast family of video producers.  We started production on this spot in the Fall of 2019, collecting statements from familiar clients representing many areas of the island with Kaimukī’s Media Services Manager Mana Franquez as the spot’s host.

You can watch the TV spot right here!

“Like Me”

Directed, Shot, and Edited by Dane Neves

Written by Jack Bates

Makeup by Jana Naone

Color Correction by Deron Kamisato

Additional Footage by Alex Miyamoto, Anne Fontanilla, Tom Collins, Sisto Domingo

Starring Mana Franquez, Kianna Cooks, Jeff Gere, Will Espero, Kamaka Pili, Leslie Gil, Mike Hall

YOUTH CAPITOL COMMENTARY is held at the State Capitol on opening day of the legislature where student video crews interview lawmakers and community members. Those interviews are then aired on our cable channels and internet platforms.

59 students, representing 15 schools on the island of Oʻahu, spent months researching their political interviewees and rehearsing for the big day.  On Wednesday, January 15, all of their hard work came to fruition as they got to experience a full day of food, music, comradery, and insights into our island community.

Mahalo to the following schools who participated in Youth Capitol Commentary 2020:

  • Ewa Makai Middle
  • Hawaii Technology Academy
  • Hickam Elementary
  • Ka Waihona o ka Na’auao
  • Kaʻaʻawa Elementary
  • Kainalu Elementary School
  • Kapolei Charter
  • King Intermediate
  • Kipapa Elementary
  • Kula Kaiapuni ʻo Ānuenue
  • Leilehua High
  • Mililani Middle
  • Nānākuli High and Intermediate
  • Sacred Hearts Academy
  • Waipahu Intermediate

Click here to view the photos taken on opening day.

Catch all of the interviews, conducted by student teams representing ‘Ōlelo’s six community media centers around the island, on the following dates/times: