Kalaupapa General Management Plan Released
NPS News Release
The National Park Service (NPS) released the Kalaupapa National Historical Park General Management Plan last week after years of planning and public input.
The plan provides broad guidance for the management of the park. It will navigate the NPS and its many partners in the protection of the Hansen’s disease community at Kalaupapa and its legacy. With malama i ka ‘aina (care for the land and waters) at its core, the plan provides direction for the preservation of Kalaupapa’s cherished resources and future visitation over the next 20 years and beyond.
“We are especially grateful to the many people who provided their mana‘o to the development of the general management plan over several years,” said Amy Sakurada, Acting Superintendent of Kalaupapa National Historical Park. “The plan provides guidance to move forward together and to ensure the long-term sensitive and respectful management of the resources and legacy of Kalaupapa.”
The NPS is committed to continuing work with the patient residents and the community in implementing this plan and future projects at the park.
The primary story at Kalaupapa is the forced relocation from 1866 to 1969 of people from Hawaii afflicted with Hansen’s disease (leprosy) to the remote northern Kalaupapa Peninsula on the island of Molokai. Today, Kalaupapa serves as a place for education and contemplation, where many families can reconnect with an ancestor once considered “lost.” The remaining 10 patient residents of Kalaupapa may reside in the community through the entirety of their lives.
Before Kalaupapa became a settlement for individuals with Hansen’s disease it was home to Native Hawaiians who lived within the boundaries of what is now the park for more than 900 years. Structural remnants built and used over centuries are everywhere within the park and illustrate how early Native Hawaiians lived their daily lives.
Kalaupapa National Historical Park was designated as a unit of the national park system on Dec. 22, 1980. The park’s authorized boundaries encompass 8,725 acres of land and 2,000 acres of water, though only a small part of the park – 23 acres – is owned by the National Park Service. The remainder is owned by other government and private organizations, which work cooperatively with the National Park Service in managing the landscape.
Parts of the park hold designations as a state Natural Area Reserve, Forest Reserve, Hawaii State Seabird Sanctuary, National Historic Landmark, and National Natural Landmark.
For more information about the general management plan and to view the environmental assessment and Finding of No Significant Impact (FONSI) associated with the planning process, please visit parkplanning.nps.gov/projectHome.cfm?projectID=24883. To learn more about Kalaupapa National Historical Park, please see the unit website, nps.gov/kala.