Housing specialist Shayna Manlapao, who received a public shout-out in a Letter to the Editor in The Maui News, was named Maui Economic Opportunity June Employee of the Month.
“Not only does she provide personal excellence with all of her clients, as a co-worker Shay has helped me learn the ropes and tips of our duties in RAP (Rental Assistance Program),” said Lance Winston, who nominated Shay for the honor. “She has been patient, extremely kind, and makes work fun with her local flair.”
In the letter, Victor Lopez of Kihei explained how their credit card and loan debt mounted after losing their jobs in the pandemic.
“The MEO rental assistance program has been a huge help during a very stressful time,” he said. “Not only did this program and the rental assistance allow us to start paying down debt and keep from going into arrears, the counseling and talks we had with Shayna, our case manager, taught us to look at our spending habits.
“Since being on the assistance program, we’ve eliminated needless spending and have begun and will continue to stick to budgets for things like groceries and discretionary spending.”
Shayna began at MEO in the Youth Services Department in May 2018. She moved to the Community Services Department in December 2020 and currently is a Housing Specialist II in Rental Assistance.
“During the HELP (Hawai‘i Emergency Laulima Partnership) program she stepped up and became one of the most effective HELP case workers,” said Cliff Caesar, Chief Human Resources Officer. “She showed her true commitment to helping those in need and made us proud to have her on our team.”
June’s employee of the month was honored during a general staff meeting on Thursday, July 29, and received a $150 check and an extra vacation day. Lance earned $50 for the nomination.