Oprah Winfrey and Dwayne Johnson launch the People’s Fund of Maui to assist wildfire victims

Oprah Winfrey and Dwayne Johnson are teaming up to help the people of Maui after devastating wildfires drastically changed the lives of thousands on the Hawaiian island in a matter of moments.

The duo announced the People’s Fund of Maui, benefiting those affected by the horrific wildfires that swept through Maui three weeks ago. The relief fund will give anyone age 18 and over in Lahaina and Kula $1,200 per month to assist their recovery.

Winfrey and Johnson contributed an initial $10 million to the relief fund.

In the immediate aftermath of the blaze, Winfrey received backlash over her response to the wildfires.

The 69-year-old media mogul, a longtime resident of Maui, showed up to an evacuation shelter with a CBS camera crew. She was refused entry due to the shelter’s “no media” policy. However, she later returned to drop off and distribute supplies.

She also caught some flack for owning around 1,000 acres on the island.

BEVERLY HILLS, CA – SEPTEMBER 26: Oprah Winfrey at the “Greenleaf” Press Conference at the Four Seasons Hotel on September 26, 2016 in Beverly Hills, California. (Photo by Vera Anderson/WireImage)

Now she’s following through with a promise she made to help the people of Maui.

“Collaborating closely with an esteemed advisory board and support from the local community and respected elders, this new fund will serve as a bridge to provide cash directly to the families and individuals affected so that they can personally determine how best to use the funds for themselves,” a statement read.

Over the past several weeks, Winfrey has been meeting with people who have been impacted and asking them what they need the most.

“The main thing I’ve been hearing is their concern about how to move forward under the immense financial burden. The community has come together in so many wonderful ways, and my intention is to support those impacted as they determine what rebuilding looks like for them.”

Lahaina, Maui, Thursday, August 11, 2023 – Days after a wildfire destroyed most of Lahaina, crews are going house to house in search of survivors or human remains. (Robert Gauthier/Los Angeles Times via Getty Images)

“We are beyond grateful to be working alongside esteemed community leaders of Maui to launch the People’s Fund of Maui,” Johnson, who is of Samoan descent and lived on Hawaii during his childhood said.

“These leaders are offering their guidance to ensure our fund can put money directly in the hands of those individuals most affected.”

The two thanked the public for their initial help and called upon them once again to support the people of Maui.

“To all who have already offered your help, thank you for your support and for those wanting to help now, your prayers and resources are a welcome assistance for those displaced within the Maui community.”

“We want to have this fund go for as long as you, America, choose to help us with this fund,” Winfrey said.

“And our goal is to be able to give people money regularly for at least the next six months so that they will be able to make decisions for themselves and be able to have some sense of value for what they can bring to themselves and to their families. We will continue the fund for as long as you help us continue the fund.”


The people of Maui still need our help. If you have the resources, please consider giving.