Serving family caregivers in West Hawaii since 1996

It takes a whole community 

to care for our caregivers.

Many thanks to our sponsors from 2015 through 2020:

West Hawaii Healthcare Council

Hawaii Community Foundation

Hawaii County Office of Aging


Powerful Tools for Caregivers

Young Brothers

Kona Adult Day Center

Services for Seniors

Hawaii Alliance for

Community Health (HACH)

Regency at Hualalai

Project Dana

Young Brothers

Hawaii Community Fed. Credit Union



Tutu's House

Ho'oNani Place

PFI Rubbish Service, Inc.

Our Mission and History

We promote, enhance, and support caregiving though education, net-working, planning, coordinating, and clearinghouse activities.

HCCN has offered a number of caregiver events in West Hawaii since 1999. In partnership with Hawaii County Office of Aging, caregiver conferences, called “Carousel of Care: Caring For Family, Caring for Yourself,” have been the primary means of fulfilling our mission.

HCCN’s uniqueness stems from our diverse partners and the opportunity to work together on the west side of Hawaii Island to focus on the needs of a close-knit community. We also have the added advantage of a culture that radiates the aloha spirit, which is essential for creating positive action and a caring atmosphere in all our projects.

Only as a community can we accom-plish goals that would be impossible as individuals. It is the strength in numbers that multiplies our resources.

Judy Bell, profiled here, is our inspiration and guiding hand.  

For a listing of the current board of directors, please see below.


Judith M. Bell, BA, Treasurer; Founding Member. Former family caregiver; retired from the health care field after 45 years.  Actively involved in a number of community and senior volunteer organizations, e.g. Senior Medicare Patrol (SMP), State Health Insurance Assistance Program (SHIP), Powerful Tools for Caregivers class leader and Master Trainer, Hawaii County Committee on Aging North Kona representative.

Katherine Buckovetz, M.S.,EdD; Director.  Former family caregiver, retired director of governmental social services, Medicaid, food stamps, housing, welfare, immigration, counseling, aging and economic development programs, school psychologist, national consultant. National Employment Counseling President and National Counselor of the Year, AAUW HI Public Policy Secretary, Susan B Anthony Award, Volunteer in various West Hawaii programs. Kathy grew up on O’ahu and spent school vacations on the Big Island.

Joann D'Addio, M.Ed.; Director.  Former family caregiver for Mom; retired after 34 years from Chicago Public Schools as a high school teacher of students with learning disabilities as well as counselor to the entire student population. Currently co-facilitating caregiver support group monthly as a volunteer for the Alzheimer’s Association Aloha Chapter Kona.

Karen Klemme, RN; Director.  Former family caregiver to parents; retired RN after 40+ year career in Rehabilitation; case management and nurse life care planning. Karen opened the Kona Adult Day Center in 1988 and has been a resident of Kona since 1986. She facilitates the Kona Brain Injury Support Group meetings (since 1994) and volunteers with Meals on Wheels and LifeCare Center of Kona.

Heloise Lochman, BA; President. Former family caregiver; retired craftsman, musician. Has been a volunteer reading tutor with Ignite Literacy Program at Holualoa School; Reef Teach volunteer.

Eileen Mena; Vice President. Former family caregiver to husband and mother; retired in 2006 from Department of Justice Office of the U. S. Attorney. Has volunteered with Kona Elk's Lodge in the Drug Awareness Program, and AARP on the Big Island.

Karen von Kaenel, R.N., PhD.; Director. Former professor of nursing, developer of a nationally recognized Health and BioScience Academy and a certified Master Teacher. As a health educator and a developmental psychologist, Karen brings her nursing expertise to the areas of family behaviors and gertontology.

Kathy Weidner; Director.  Former family caregiver for my mother; retired Social Worker (LCSW); worked for Visiting Nurses in NJ for 10 years with many seniors and their issues; moved to HI in 2016 and now volunteer with Medicare SHIP program and Powerful Tools for Caregivers as Class Leader. 

The Board of Directors is responsible for spearheading the organization’s work; exploring opportunities to serve caregivers, such as sponsoring Powerful Tools for Caregivers classes; and assessing community resources. We keep records of activities and resources. Officers and directors serve the Board on a voluntary basis. Board members are directly involved in project planning, implementation and evaluation. We form subcommittees from time to time, drawn from HCCN volunteer membership, to fulfill the aims of a particular project or program, such as our periodic conference for family caregivers.