Without hesitation Davlyn Marshall walks us through her home. She's proud of the life she's been able to piece together with hard work and the generosity of friends. But minutes later she really starts to light up.
"This is my daughter Tylee when she was about 2 months old. We were living in Nanakuli at the time. This picture she's also 2 months old in Nanakuli," says Davlyn.
But Tylee's now 16 years old and she's been through a lot. About a year and a half ago Davlyn caught Tylee's dad dealing drugs, including ice out of their home. She immediately moved Tylee out of the house to go live with relatives while she dealt with the situation. Tylee took it hard.
"Every time I would go to see her she would cry, cry, cry, I wanna come home,"
Eventually mom moved out too. Broke and getting no child support from Tylee's dad, the two came here to the Ohana Ola O Kahumana Program.
"She was my backbone. She was there every time I was, all the crying, wanting to be back home. She was always there for me. She never said stop worrying about him. She never put me down for that."
Davlyn will eventually have to find permanent housing and still has a stack of medical bills. But she's finally got her finances under control thanks to credit counseling and help with budgeting. That's good news for Tylee.
"Now she can get things from school like her yearbook. She didn't get it the last 2 years. She didn't even get pictures, you know school pictures."
But mom would like to go a step further this Christmas and put presents under the tree for Tylee. Clothes, a hair straightener, even a blow-dryer are on the wish list. Anything a teenage girl might want. As for Davlyn...
"I have a roof over my head. I have food in my refrigerator. I have my health and I have my daughter. That's the main thing."
Something to think about as we head to the malls for this holiday season.
To adopt her family or help out someone else this holiday season. Call "Helping Hands Hawaii" at 440-3800 or contact any First Hawaiian Bank to make a donation. You can make a donation anytime between now and Christmas Day.