HONOLULU, Hawaii (HawaiiNewsNow) - A single father who’s struggling to make ends meet wants his young daughters to enjoy Christmas this year.
He’s hoping the kindness of others will come through for his ohana. Meet HNN’s first profile in the annual Adopt-a-Family series.
When Robert Hao was in the fifth grade, bad things started happening with his body. For no reason, he’d suddenly fall or trip.
It got worse as he got older.
He’s now 42 and a single father who suffers from muscular dystrophy.
"Just tiredness mostly. Not being able to do certain things for my kids and for myself," he said.
Hao can’t stand upright for very long so working is difficult.
"If I fall I could get hurt, can't take care of my kids," he said.
His daughters mean everything to him.
“He’s ambitious to want to make his children’s lives better, especially with him being disabled. That’s the hard part,” said Genie Naone of Ke Ola Mamo, a Native Hawaiian healthcare system that’s working with Hao.
His daughters are 12 and 10.
"They're good kids," he said. "They stay on top of their grades and sports. They help me out a lot."
Much of his time is spent in a wheelchair.
He's on a fixed income and every dollar is accounted for.
"They understand what I can or can't provide," he said.
The Haos need help this Christmas. Robert needs a new wheelchair. His is old and overused.
He also needs tires for his vehicle and coupons for oil changes and auto repairs.
"That's a lifeline for me and my kids to get them around to school and softball," he said.
His children would like gift certificates for clothing and if possible a new computer or a Smart TV.
“They always ask for iPads or tablets, watching YouTube and all that,” Hao said.
He'd also like to take his girls to dinner and a movie but there isn't enough money in the budget for outings.
His older daughter plays softball and could use softball gear.
"He definitely looks out and wants to succeed for his children's sake," Naone said. "Everything out of his mouth is about his two daughters."
Hao said it’s embarrassing to ask for help but he doesn’t know what else to do.
"Whatever we can get is a blessing," he said.
He’s trying to teach his daughters to be good human beings. This Christmas the kindness of others could help them learn that lesson.
To adopt the Hao ohana (case number KOM-3), or any of the families featured this Christmas season, call Helping Hands Hawaii at 440-3800.
For more information about the Adopt-A-Family program, click here.