Our Islands, Our Future

Retired educators Pat and Richard Endsley of Lahaina have built an after-school tutoring project that serves more than 300 children a year in West Maui. They say they could not have achieved success without the generosity of some 100 adult tutors and 70 high school students. They also give credit to their major sponsors — the County of Maui, Susan Bendon and her family in Paia, Debbie and Stuart Katz and their nonprofit Beyond the Rainbow and Aina Nalu. The Rotary Clubs in West Maui have also chipped in money and the Old Lahaina Luau and the Ritz-Carlton have provided volunteer tutors.

“You have to have a whole gamut of people who will help you,” Pat Endsley said. “Without them we could not do this.” The tutoring itself is free. In addition to being tutors, the Endsleys oversee other duties including tutor recruitment and training, ordering of books and supplies and maintaining a budget. The tutoring project costs approximately $26,000 to operate but none of the money is used for salaries. Expenses covered by a County grant and donations from businesses and residents include bus transportation, snacks, books and other tutoring supplies for the students.

Pat and Richard Endsley welcome volunteers from the Kaunoa Senior Service Volunteer Program while also being participants themselves. They say the majority of their tutors are retirees, of which only a handful are experienced in education. In addition, Lahainaluna High School students also help 4th-graders with math assignments. While the tutoring program focuses on skills in math and reading, the Endsleys were able to fulfill Pat’s dream to add extracurricular activities including lessons in history, ukulele and other creative arts. “To me the program’s perfect now,” Pat Endsley said. The Endsleys started ‘Wednesday Is Tutoring Day’ at one school in the year 2000 and have expanded it to three days of the week at all four public schools on the West Side.