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The Power of a Pickle Jar

When our family moved to Hawaii nearly 10 years ago, we were pretty surprised to learn of all the need in the local community of the beautiful resort town of Waikoloa, HI. Sometimes the need is great and beyond our capabilities. But sometimes, as the locals say, it is “small kine”, smaller needs that we at Mary Jane’s can help alleviate or we can pool our resources with others to make a bigger impact. I had the idea of a change donation jar that would sit at the register and if guests wanted to drop in their change, we would match what we could and put it to good use. And so, I cleaned out a pickle jar and we put it out to see what would happen. And things DID happen! Our guests were so generous with their donations… change, dollar bills, $20 bills, and even more!

It’s just a pickle jar – but what we do with it, is powerful.

So, you are probably wondering, “What have you done with the collections"? That is the fun and rewarding part of this story! The donations of our guests have allowed us to give back to our local community in so many ways!

  1. Over $1500 donated to date to the Hawaii Food Basket. We love the Hawaii Food Basket because all donations stay on Hawaii Island to support our local families in need.

  2. Angel Tree Donations to the Salvation Army at Christmas for Young Girls

  3. Christmas Sponsorships for Entire Families (gifts for family members plus essential home and personal care items to last several months)

  4. Paid Off School Lunches for Families on “Reduced Lunch Plan” that were struggling to afford the cost

  5. Donations to local Good Samaritan who collects food and re-distributes to the neediest of local families

I am sharing this with you all today because due to an abundance of “small kine” change drops, we were recently able to make a considerable financial donation to a young high school student in need. She is an aspiring doctor and this donation will help her to attend the NYLF Medicine Program at St John’s University in New York this summer! This student’s name is Kianni Dodson, a local here in Waikoloa who I have had the privilege to get to know personally over the past few years through my love of outrigger canoe paddling. When I first met Kianni, I was impressed with her take charge attitude at such a young age – she was steering a six-man outrigger traditional koa wood canoe that weighed over 400lbs at age twelve! I know with the leadership skills that she demonstrates; she will make an excellent doctor and we are thrilled that we can help move her toward her dreams. You can read more about Kianni in her own words below.

We feel grateful and blessed that we have been able to support these amazing organizations and people through our pickle jar! Who knew that "small kine" change, could make such an impact? So, if you are ever in our Waikoloa shop, consider dropping your coins or a few bills in our pickle jar and keep the power going!


Mary Jane

Aloha, my name is Kianni Dodson. Paddler, student, and a future doctor. Recently I was nominated for the NYLF Medicine Program. This program would allow me to participate in hands-on medical workshops in New York during the summer. This is very important to me and my family. This program will help me reach my dreams. My family and I reached out to multiple businesses in the hope of donations to fund my tuition. Any support is appreciated. If you would like to help, please visit

Thankfully, Mary Jane’s was kind enough to make a contribution! This is amazing because not only is Mary Jane's helping me reach my dreams, but this has encouraged me to show my support for this business. My family and I love Mary Jane’s. The workers there are always so kind and helpful. Not to mention all the cute jewelry and designs! If you didn’t notice, I am wearing a paddle necklace from Mary Jane's in some of the pictures of myself. This paddle necklace is by far my favorite item in the shop!

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