Ho’oikaika Partnership’s Community Engagement Committee had a vision to create a video highlighting one of our local Maui families who was brave enough to trust in the system, engage wholeheartedly in services to better their lives, and to truly maintain their family no matter what it took. The result is “A Journey to Healing,” a short film beautifully created by students at Maui Waena Intermediate School.
The video features Kristy, a dedicated mother of five children, and her ‘ohana who went through the system, struggling to find stability, asking for help, falling short at times but always getting back up. They struggled with domestic violence, mental health concerns, substance abuse, and homelessness which led to CWS involvement. CWS was pending closure and the family was then referred to Child and Family Service for continued support. Despite the struggles, her focus remained on her children, her marriage, and their future. Although it seemed like a constant losing battle, she never lost hope.
Kristy and her ‘ohana persevered, moved into a homeless shelter, engaged in services, eventually accepted through HUD and found stable housing. Child and Family Service along with many other agencies worked closely together to provide support and ensure that the barriers that this family faced were addressed.
Her family was reunited, her children came home, her marriage restored, and although she knew that the pieces of her life were falling back into place, she expressed that she would never take for granted the village who helped uplift her, who supported her and her ‘ohana throughout her lowest moments in life, the village who helped her raise her keiki.
Ho’oikaika Partnership continues to highlight Kristy and her ‘ohana and their many successes, inspiring other ‘ohanas in our community to never lose hope! As we share their story throughout our community, state, and nation, we hope to decrease the stigma of receiving help, and encourage families to stay strong, not lose hope, and put their faith in community resources around them.