Alson Kelen

Students shine in debate battle

Students shine in debate battle

Margaret Heffernan once said “For good ideas and true innovation, you need human interaction, conflict, argument, and debate.”This was the case for the Public School System and the National Nuclear Commission-hosted debate that ended Education Week on a high note. The day of debates at the ICC saw students engaged in learning, developing ideas, and […]

Fire wrecks canoe center

Fire wrecks canoe center

GIFF JOHNSON Fires have long been the scourge of Majuro and Sunday’s blaze that destroyed the Waan Aelon in Majel (Canoes of the Marshall Islands) two-story offices and workshops proved that point.Firefighting equipment and know-how is rarely able to stop a fire in progress. The best that can be hoped for in Majuro is that […]

Canoe race challenges captains

Canoe race challenges captains

Last Friday’s Culture Day Litakboki canoe race was a challenge in multiple ways. Majuro’s version of the famous Ailinglaplap Jebro race featured a nearly 30-mile-long course from Laura to Delap — nothing like the usual downtown races that run a triangle route from Delap to Ejit Island and back. Some 15 outriggers representing different atolls […]

Marshallese canoes built in EU

Marshallese canoes built in EU

GIFF JOHNSON Marshallese style boats are being designed and built by skilled builders in the Marshall Islands, naturally enough, but also in places that one might not expect, such as Europe. Here in Majuro, Waan Aelon in Majel has designed and built what they call a “carro proa.” The WAM team built it in three […]

Cruising on Kõto im Al

Cruising on Kõto im Al

Waan Aelon in Majel (Canoes of the Marshall Islands) held a launching ceremony for their collaborative project, the WAM vessel that has been named “Kõto im Al” (Wind and Sun). Afterwards, participants were able to ride the vessel around the lagoon for a short cruise using an outboard engine powered by solar panels.The project is […]

Seeking nuclear justice in the climate era

Seeking nuclear justice in the climate era

GIFF JOHNSONThe low-lying Marshall Islands are consumed by climate change. Increasing ocean inundations from rising sea levels and the specter that this atoll nation could be underwater later this century has pushed Marshall Islands leaders and young people to the forefront of the global climate movement calling for action to curtail a problem they had […]

RMI celebrates 42 years

RMI celebrates 42 years

The 42nd Constitution Day Saturday May 1 brought everyone to an atmosphere of pride and celebration. The program started with an outrigger canoe race with Hirobo Obeketang, Alson Kelen, and Melvin Majmeto officiating the race. This was followed by a parade from Delap Formosa to Delap Park. Included in the parade were members of the […]

One Word hits Majuro, Ebeye

One Word hits Majuro, Ebeye

The premiere of the latest Marshallese and German-made movie “One Word” had the audience starstruck at Jittak-En Saturday night with its rich cinematography and unerring documentation about climate change. The movie is the outcome of the collaboration between German film team Kameradisten (Comrades) directors Viviana and Mark Uriona and local non-profit organization Jo-Jikum.It features great […]

WAM trains its own

WAM trains its own

GIFF JOHNSONIn the consultant-dependent world of the Marshall Islands, the Waan Aelon in Majel (Canoes of the Marshall Islands) program stands out.“Everyone who works at WAM is Marshallese,” said Director Alson Kelen in a recent interview. “WAM is about training,” he said. “It’s what we do.” While the program has relied in the past on […]

Canoes blessed, paddled, enjoyed

Canoes blessed, paddled, enjoyed

Fifty-plus people turned out to witness the blessing and launch of the Majuro Ocean Sports Club outrigger canoes on Saturday at the University of the South Pacific’s lagoonside campus in Long Island. “The ambience was so positive and everyone was really excited to be there for the launch and the paddling,” Club Captain Larry Hernandez […]

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