The H3 (Highway to Healthy Hawaii) Project

H3 is one of the student led initiatives from the Fellows class of 2014. We interviewed May Ann Vicente, a core member of the H3 initiative.

What is H3?

H3 stands for Highway to Healthy Hawaii. It is a startup program that aimed to create a good learning environment for students in both elementary and middle school during non-school hours in which they can be physically active and mentally prepared to make good and healthy decisions for a better lifestyle. 

What was your vision or goal?

H3’s vision is to witness the transformation of Hawaii’s youth’s perspective on life by exploring the benefits of exercise and a balanced diet through various outdoor activities and informational presentations. 

What was the issue that you saw the need to act on?

The rapid increase of the rate of obesity within this particular group of the youth and the evident lack of the youth today to go outdoors to play due to the many games and technology available to them indoors [motivated us to take action]. 

What drove your group to initiate this project and why?

As part of this generation, we believe that we needed to take action to help our fellow youth toward the better and healthier lifestyle in which they can also apply better decision-making skills in other aspects of their lives. 

What leadership skills (from the Center for Tomorrow’s Leaders program) and what values did you need to apply to this project?

Challenge the Process; it was a brave attempt to create a type of program that many established organizations have already started working on. We came up with brighter and fresher ideas as to how the learning approach would be to the youth in order for them to retain the knowledge they gained from the program.

What was the outcome of your project?

The program itself was not quite successful in establishing itself as an organization. Thus, the H3 group (our five members) decided we could still do something to help the youth learn about healthy lifestyles. 

We partnered up with the Kalihi YMCA and have participated in their annual Healthy Kids Fair in April where we administered a booth that taught the participants the importance of water in comparison to the sugary drinks that are most popular today.