"Helping Hands Hawaii" brings holiday cheer to a single mom

(HawaiiNewsNow) - At Hawaii News Now, we have partnered with Helping Hands Hawaii to feature families in our community who could use a little help this holiday season.

One single mom, in need who has just gotten her Christmas prayers answered.

"Welcome to my home."

Marlisa waited 5 years for this apartment in public housing. Clean and neat, these humble surroundings represent so much more than just a place to live.

"It's a new beginning for my kids, and a stepping stone. They've been through a lot and we're just finally getting on our feet and blessed to have the people in our lives."

Marlisa was a case worker at the community clinic on Maui.. And her life seemed to be on track, but the father of her children became abusive and she had to leave her job and the island.

"There was a lot of things that I needed to go through to take care of my children, from transitional housing to a women's shelter, finally getting this."

Life is much better now. 10 year old daughter Sierra is getting good grades in school and has just joined a Tahitian dance troupe.

And four year old Ashley is a bit of a miracle. When she was diagnosed with a developmental disorder at age 1, some specialists thought she would never be able to walk. Clearly, she has her own ideas about what can and can't do.

So what can you give to brighten the holidays for this precious family? Sierra has a wish list.

"A rip stick, bike, clothes for school, anything Hello Kitty, Tahitian things for my practice."

And for Ashley?

"She likes anything Elmo, anything Barney, anything that is Curious George, something that lights up, rolling toys, cars, clothes for school, shoes or slippers for her when she goes outside."

This family is so full of hope for the future.. Your gifts will fill them with joy as well.

After this story aired, someone stepped up to adopt this family, but there are many more in need.

To adopt other family during 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.