Today marks lā 100 of Pu’uhonua o Pu’uhuluhulu in the protection of Mauna Kea By Nikki Sanchez


Today marks lā 100 of Pu’uhonua o Pu’uhuluhulu in the protection of Mauna Kea.

For over one hundred days kupuna (elders), kia’i (protectors) and keiki (children) have been living on the access road at the base of the worlds tallest mountain. They have created a community grounded in Kapu Aloha (moral uprightness and respect for all relations). I had the privilege of visiting the Mauna during the very beginning Pu’uhonua o Pu’uhuluhulu and it had lived in my heart and my ever since.

What is occurring there is the doorway, the model that can lead the rest of us about how to enact a revolution of love and land defense grounded in cultural knowledge and connection to land and one another. These pictures were shot by Danielle Da Silva from Photographers Without Borders and are accompanied by profiles written by me, I had hoped to publish it today but my laptop has been damaged in my travels, so that is still to come.

My hands go up to all those who are on the Mauna, many who have been there since the very first night. To all those who followed the call to go. All those who are preparing food and bringing supplies. All those who are supporting from afar. You are leading us into a revolution of love and consciousness.

So much aloha to you all.


Nikki Sanchez is a Pipil/Maya and Irish/Scottish academic, Indigenous media maker and environmental educator. Nikki holds a master’s degree in Indigenous Governance and is presently completing a PhD with a research focus on emergent Indigenous media. She presented her first TEDx presentation, entitled “Decolonization is for Everyone” this year. Nikki was the acting David Suzuki Foundation “Queen of Green” from 2016-2018 where her work centered on digital media creation to provide sustainable solutions for a healthy planet, as well as content creation to bring more racial inclusivity into the environmental movement. Her most recent media project was the VICELAND series RISE which focused on global Indigenous resurgence. RISE debuted at Sundance in February 2017 and has received global critical acclaim, recently winning the Canadian Screen Guild Award for Best Documentary series. For the past decade, Nikki has also worked as an Indigenous environmental educator, curriculum developer, and media consultant. She started and runs Decolonize Together, an independent consulting company which specializes in decolonial and equity training for businesses and institutions. She is a keynote speaker with Keynote Canada and a contributor to TEDx, Looselips and ROAR Magazine.