HONOLULU (HawaiiNewsNow) In today's Helping Hands Hawaii we meet a family who may be struggling financially, but who always finds time and energy to contribute to their community.
At Palolo Valley Homes, the buildings are colorful and the lawns trimmed and neat. There have been a lot of improvements in the past decade including beautiful murals on a community building called The Hale.
"So this is where everything happened," said Stephen Maybir. "This is ground zero as far as the movement that was done in the late 90s into the 2000s."
Stephen was talking about the work that was done prior to Palolo Homes being transferred from the State to a private non-profit ten years ago. He was just a teenager at the time, but as a resident, a part of the process.
"Just the inclusion, you get to see what a group of people can do and they did awesome stuff," added Stephen.
The experience changed him, shifting Stephen's focus to helping others.
"It's a cultural thing too for me, it's part of my identity to serve."
Stephen helps with a number of community projects, like deliveries from the Hawaii Foodbank.
"When they drop off they bring a big truck, they bring at least 8 - 10 pallets and we have a lot of perishables so we try to get it out that day," said Stephen.
The Hale is also where Stephen will help with tutoring young students at Palolo Homes.
"We have a new focus with STEM a partnership with KCC, UH Manoa and I believe UH Hilo and that's Science Technology, Engineering and Math," said Stephen.
How does Stephen's hard work make his mother feel?
"That I've done something right," said Terisa Maybir. "Well I'm very proud of him, besides his sister and the younger ones."
Terisa is the primary breadwinner of the family. A single mother and grandmother working to support her family.
"It's hard to live paycheck to paycheck all the time and a lot of us here do the same thing," said Terisa. "There are other families who have a lot more children than I do, mine are grown, but I have 3 precious grandchildren that I would love to give something special to at this time."
Terisa's daughter Sheree held her youngest as she talked about those three kids and the holidays ahead.
"Just the thought of having each other and just being able to do the little things," said Sheree. "They're not the type of kids, they don't expect much."
The Maybir family and others at Palolo Homes are exactly the kind of people you want to help. They are thankful for the assistance, but also not afraid to work hard themselves.
Stephen said it best, "Not just hands out, but hand up or hands together as we do the work and that's going to be our focus in the next 10 years with our property, our organization."
And their family.