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Honolulu City and County's Resource for Aging, Disability and Caregiving


Elderly Affairs Division's Quick Links:


KUPUNA CAREGIVER Program Information:

For the City & County of Honolulu, the Elderly Affairs Division has chosen to contract for Adult Day Care services with Kupuna Caregiver funds.  For more information on the Kupuna Caregiver Program, please go to:

On Oahu, the program is currently at capacity.  If you have been assessed and deemed eligible, you are now on a waitlist.

Update - August 2019: Change in benefit to $210/week will affect participants on Oahu starting OCTOBER 1, 2019.  On Oahu, 55 participants are currently receiving benefits and approximately 50 are on the waitlist.  The change in benefit will allow more participants to enroll in the program, taking approximately 20 people off the waitlist.

Update - June 2019:  The Legislature intends to continue the program for the 2020 Fiscal Year with the current benefit of $70/day changing to $210/week.  The change in benefit will apply to existing participants when the 2020 funding is released.  They will continue to receive the $70/day benefit until the 2019 funding is exhausted.

Update - June 2018: Additional funding was released to continue the program after June 30, 2018.  No break in service was experienced for the remaining 60 participants at the time.  The current funding covers services until June 30, 2019, however, the program is still at capacity.  Any applicants that have been assessed and deemed eligible but were not referrred to a provider were placed on a waitlist.  Currently, there are over 50 people on the waitlist.  EAD continues to receive and process applications, however, depending on the rate of attrition, only a few additional participants (if any) may be enrolled for the current fiscal year.  While it is unlikely for new applicants to participate in Kupuna Caregiver Program this year, we still encourage those who are interested to call so that we may use the data to demonstrate the need in the community.

Update - February 2018: The limited amount of funding under this pilot program was estimated to be able to serve only 38 caregivers on Oahu for a 6 month period.  After receiving funding in February, and with a deadline to expend the funds before June 30th 2018, over 80 participants were referred to contracted providers from February to May.  Based on projected use, the program put a hold on referrals from May.  Participants were reminded to have a transition plan after June 30, 2018.  

If you believe you are eligible for the Kupuna Caregiver program, you and your care-recipient are likely eligible for other services offered through the Elderly Affairs Division.  For caregivers, there are educational opportunities and support groups.  For frail elders, the state also offers the KUPUNA CARE program which provides services such as home-delivered meals, transportation, bathing services, attendant care, and homemaker.  For more information on these additional services, please call our Senior Helpline at 768-7700.


Kupuna Caregiver Requirements:

  • Caregiver must be employed at least 30 hours a week.  Per the Executive Office on Aging, self-employment will not qualify as employment for the purpose of this program.
  • The care recipient must be 60 years or older and have impairments in conducting activities of daily living (ADL) and/or instrumental activities of daily living (IADL).
  • The benefit is paid directly to a City and County of Honolulu contracted service provider. 


Preliminary process:

  • Caregivers call the Senior Helpline and are screened for eligibility.
  • Caregiver and Care Recipient are assessed in the home by Elderly Affairs Division staff.  Care recipients that meet the requirements continue to the next step
  • Elderly Affairs Division sends attestation form to caregiver's employer to verify the 30 hour/week requirement.  
  • Once received, the verified form deems applicant eligible.
  • Eligible applicants are prioritized for referral to a provider.
  • Based on projected use, Elderly Affairs Division authorizes services and refers applicants to contracted provider of their choice.
  • Once program capacity is met (based on available funding), a waitlist will be kept.  The waitlist will be ordered by level of need, not waiting time.


Frequently asked questions:

  • Why am I still on the waitlist?  The amount of funding provided under this program is not enough to serve every eligible applicant. Since the program is at capacity, a waiting applicant can only be authorized for services when an existing participant leaves. The program also requires prioritization of applicants, therefore, the waitlist is not ordered on a first-in, first-out basis.  When an opening occurs, all eligible applicants on the waitlist are evaluated  and the applicant with the highest level of need and/or risk of institutionization is selected to receive service.  The following factors have the greatest weight on prioritization:
    • Economic need: income and assets.
    • Social need: level of isolation; little or no informal supports.
    • Risk of institutional placement: high-level of care; near eligible for medicaid.  
  • What is Adult Day Care?    The service provides supervision in a safe & comfortable environment, meals/snacks, and on-site activities for physical strengthening, mental stimulation, socialization and recreation.  Each provider has different operation hours from morning to evening which typically range from 9 to 11 hours.  Some providers may also assist with personal care/bathing, toileting, and/or incontinence, usually for an additional fee or through a higher daily rate.
  • Can this program cover my existing Adult Day Care service?    It is possible.  However, information on existing supports are collected as part of the assessment and will be considered when prioritizing need of participants.  
  • Does a doctor need to assess the care recipient?    If accepted and referred to a contracted provider, the participant will need to follow the specific requirements of the provider, which normally includes medical clearance from the participant's primary care physician and TB clearance.
  • Who are the contracted Adult Day Care providers?    Contracted providers include:
  • Why is only Adult Day Care being provided?    The administrative costs for contracting several providers of different services is not feasible for the limited amount of funding. Adult Day Care services provides the most benefit to a working caregiver who normally cares for an elder during the evenings and weekends.  The benefit limit of $70 per day would also cover all or most of the daily cost of this service.  The supervision, meals, activities, socialization, and exercise provided with the service is also beneficial to the care recipients who would otherwise be isolated at home with no stimulation or support and at risk of self-neglect.  When attending a full day, the hourly cost of an Adult Day program ranges from about $5.50 to $9.50/hour.This is substantially more cost effective than in-home care which typically ranges from $18 to $25/hour. However, EAD recognizes that some caregivers' situations are not appropriate for Day Care, and short in-home care assistance could be a significant benefit.  Therefore, EAD is considering this and other options if the program is to continue.
  • What happens if the service costs more than $70 per day?  If the provider's daily rate is over the $70 per day benefit, the participant and caregiver will be responsible to pay the provider directly for the difference.    Other costs, such as application fees, incontinence care or toileting assistance, personal care/bathing, early drop-off/late-pick-up, extra meal, excursion fees, etcetera, will also be the responsibility of the participant and caregiver.  Based on anticipated usage, providers may require pre-payment of these fees.
  • What about Adult Day Health services?  Adult Day Health, which offers a higher level of care than Adult Day Care, is also available through this program. Refer to the question above about who our providers are.
  • To learn more about Adult Day Care & Adult Day Health services, including tips and suggestions, watch this video: "Adult Day Centers: Keeping Elders Engaged" from the Kupuna Education Center at KCC.



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ABOUT Our Services

We help people find assistance for aging, disability and caregiving, such as with Nutrition, Housing, Transportation, and Financing. Learn more about our services.

If you can't find what you are looking for on our website, call the Helpline at 808-768-7700.

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About the Honolulu Elderly Affairs Division

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The Elderly Affairs Division (EAD), a division of the Department of Community Services of the city and county of Honolulu, is your local Area Agency on Aging

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Its purpose is to plan, support and advocate for programs to promote the well-being of Oahu's older adults and caregivers and to address and respond to the priority needs of all seniors.

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Please read our Area Plan on Aging to learn more about EAD.

FIND Services and Products

Search our directory to find services and products in the community.

Publications and brochures , including the Senior Information & Assistance Handbook, Family Caregiver Guide, and Oahu Housing Guide.

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Determine eligibility and learn how to apply for assistance programs.



  • Click here to read the ADRC Hawaii Database Policies and Procedures and how to apply.
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