L&L Hawaiian BBQ gives Waco community opportunities to support Maui residents

Waco's L&L Hawaiian BBQ offers funds and food to those affected by fires in Maui. Kassidy Tsikitas | Photographer

By Ashlyn Beck | Staff Writer

L&L Hawaiian BBQ is offering the opportunity for Waco residents to give money, food and support to people in need on Maui.

Jonny Salas, owner of L&L Hawaiian BBQ, said there are several options for donating funds and food to those affected by the wildfires. He said L&L is donating up to $10,000 from online orders to provide relief to Maui residents.

“We’re trying to fundraise as much as we can through purchases through either our events that we’re throwing or our online platform,” Salas said.

Salas said L&L is also providing links directing customers to make monetary donations to the Hawaiian Red Cross.

“If there are any organizations that want to reach out for a profit-share, we can co-host an event and then put the money raised toward the fundraising foundation of Hawaii Red Cross,” Salas said.

Additionally, Salas said L&L launched a program allowing customers to buy meals to be distributed to those who are displaced. Elisia Flores, CEO of L&L Hawaiian BBQ, said the Purchase a Meal program may be accessed through the L&L app. Flores also said there will be a limited sale of “Love for Lahaina” shirts at the L&L online store, and proceeds will be donated to the Hawaiian Red Cross.

Maui, Hawaii, junior Yuriana Robles said the best way for the Baylor community to help is by understanding the magnitude of what is occurring on Maui and showing compassion and respect for those affected.

“At Baylor, whenever I tell people I’m from Hawaii, it’s so romanticized,” Robles said. “But as soon as a crisis happens, you don’t really hear much from people.”

Robles also said people should stay up to date and be aware of what is happening. According to Robles, Baylor’s Hawai’i Club is working on creating opportunities for fundraising and raising awareness.

“We got an update last week that there were probably 850 people missing, and they expect none to be alive,” Robles said. “Even if we weren’t entirely close, that’s … our ohana, and a lot of us are grieving. So just try to be respectful and conscious of what you say.”

Salas said that although he lived on Oahu, he has still felt fearful for his family and friends in Hawaii and grieved for those on Maui.

“Everybody treats each other like family, so when I heard this going on, all I could think about was my family,” Salas said. “They’re on a different island, but all I could think about was, if my family was going through this, how devastated would I be?”

Salas also said it is important to be respectful of the residents of Hawaii during this time of crisis.

“Now is definitely not the time to be planning your trips to Maui,” Salas said. “Right now, they are more worried about finding their families, rebuilding their homes and rebuilding the community. They’re trying to focus on each other.”

Salas and Robles both said residents of Hawaii are looking for the same love and support they offer to others.

“The people [who are] so accepting and loving and caring whenever you come to visit our homes would love the same love and respect and care to rebuild our community,” Salas said. “If you have ever met locals … you feel that love that they give you. It would be really nice, especially at this moment, for those people to get it back.”