About Us

/About Us
About Us2018-10-25T15:04:46+00:00

Makanalani  Kids was conceived and set up by Eric Taylor, his wife Lyn Taylor and their daughter Kelly Taylor.   They also formed the original Board of Directors. 

We welcome the opportunity to meet qualified people who would like to serve on the Board and contribute to our mission, and who are passionate about helping children.

Eric Taylor
Eric TaylorFounder
Accomplished business executive and entrepreneur, with over 30 years of global experience in high tech electronic design, manufacture and sales.

Eric founded and co-founded five successful companies in the USA and South Africa.   His first major business achievement was in 1987, when he and others formed a conglomeration of electronic companies and initiated a successful IPO.   His most recent corporate start-up in 1991 was in the field of digital video and security.  By 2002, the company was the world leader in its field with revenues of over $90M when it was sold and integrated into General Electric.

Since retiring from corporate America in 2003, Eric has advised and assisted start-ups and smaller ventures. His current focus is in philanthropy and development.


Eric was raised and schooled in South Africa, served in the air force; higher education includes BSc Engineering (electronics) and post grad immersion MBA.


Married to Lyn for 38 years, 4 children aged 19 through 31, blessed with good health and one amazing grandchild. Enjoys entrepreneurship and development, helping others, hiking, skiing, inline hockey and spending time with family and friends.

Email: Eric4mail@gmail.com

Lyn Taylor
Lyn TaylorFounder
Lyn formed and ran a successful Travel Agency before the Internet age of travel. She later joined Eric as CFO in their most recent start-up, and then expanded into Human Resources as the company grew. Lyn studied Psychology and focused on therapies that could apply to healing young lives.

Since leaving corporate America in 2000, Lyn has been very active with youth at her church and in outreach programs through elementary schools.  Her passion for helping children led to the vision which is now Makanalani.

Lyn enjoys nature, working the farm, music, reading, skiing and family.

Email: Lynzpoo@gmail.com

Kelly Taylor
Kelly Taylor
Kelly has a Masters degree in Psychology and has been a School Psychologist for several years.  Before that Kelly worked with severely handicapped teens and has also done one-on-one care of severely handicapped young adults.

Kelly enjoys nature, hiking and dance.   She is passionate about working with children and making a difference in their lives.

Email: KelsTaylor@gmail.com

Terry Barber
Terry Barber
Terry is a qualified Montessori teacher who studied at the prestigious London Montessori Teacher Training school.  Terry founded two successful schools that dealt with severely disabled children and with pre-schoolers, and currently works at a private Montessori school in California.

Terry is passionate about helping children to develop in all areas of their lives – socially, physically, emotionally and intellectually – so that they can reach their full potential.

Terry enjoys family time, reading, hiking and walking and music, and is expecting her first grandchild this year.

Email: terrybarber@gmail.com

Marilyn Smith
Marilyn Smith
Marilyn is the Family Ministries Director and co-leader of an inductive Bible Study at her church, where she also maintains the website.    Marilyn retired from full-time Children’s Ministries activities in 2011 and was deeply involved in the Christian Children’s Ministries Association and sat on its Board until 2012.  Marilyn presently continues weekly volunteer teaching.

Marilyn has been both a participant and project leader for KidzAtHeart International, a missions organization that sends teams to third world and newly emerging nations to assist them in training children’s leaders in culturally appropriate teaching methods.

Marilyn has a B.SocSci. (Social Work) degree and worked in Social Welfare for several years.  She has also worked in administrative and financial positions in multiple organizations.

Married to Gary for 38 years, 3 children aged 25 through 33 and a granddaughter aged 8.   Marilyn enjoys aquatic aerobics, walking, reading, and computer.

Email: mpjsmith52@gmail.com

Karen van der Watt
Karen van der Watt
Karen studied Cross Cultural Missions and subsequently worked with street children in Africa for two years.   She is currently active in the Children’s Ministry at her church, where she continues to work in a volunteer position.

Karen lives in California with her husband and 5 children.  She enjoys backpacking, tennis, gardening, cooking, and spending time with her family and her friends.   Karen is passionate about helping people become whole through friendship and community.

Email: karentjie@socal.rr.com

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Would you like to help?

If you would like to volunteer time or materials, please email us.
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Email contact for volunteering & questions: makanalanikids@gmail.com