LAHAINA - West Maui Chef Paris Nabavi is active in the community and takes a special interest in educating young people about healthy eating and sustainable agriculture.
For the second year in a row, a portion of the proceeds of Chef Nabavi's Cinco de Mayo celebration benefited the Lahainaluna High School Agricultural Program.
Nabavi, owner of Sangrita Grill + Cantina in Kaanapali and the former Cilantro Grill, gifted $1,200 to Keith Ideoka and his students at Lahainaluna in their garden on May 14.
Surrounded by students, Paris Nabavi (third from left) presents the donation to Keith Ideoka.
This doubled his donation from last year's event at Cilantro.
"Funds raised will take our students to the Hawaii State Future Farmers of America Conference, where students experience leadership training, state-level skills competitions and more," said Ideoka, program manager of Lahainaluna Agriculture.
"We will also purchase basic agriculture supplies for our students, such as seeds, fertilizer, potting soil, pots and garden tools that are essential to learning."
Chef Nabavi also supports the Maui Food Bank by donating the proceeds from a series of Persian cooking classes held regularly at his home's outdoor kitchen.
After a recent cooking class, Nabavi donated $3,200 to Maui Food Bank, including a matching grant from the Makana Aloha Foundation.
His current initiatives include partnering with Maui School Garden Network to sponsor organic seeds for school gardens throughout Maui County.