MIAMI — A mom with cancer is getting the gift of holiday cheer for her family this year thanks to Neighbors 4 Neighbors, which has identified the families most in need in our community.
The Lopez family was identified through Connect Familias, one of the organizations they partner with.
Taina Lopez is a mother of four. To her kids, she gives them everything and more.
"Everything that you could possibly imagine in a mom, she's just wonderful," 11-year-old Christian said about his mom.
A wonderful mom, trying her very best to make sure her kids don't feel the impact of what she is going through.
"I used to work for Amazon," Lopez said. "I was a nonstop rabbit machine going up and down stairs and just working hard. I worked through the whole pandemic. Amazon was everybody's grocery store, and I was pregnant."
It was after she gave birth to her youngest daughter, things took a turn for the worse.
"My C-section opened up," she said. "After that, I had a series of MRIs done and I ended up with a lymphoma in my spine. Due to that, I was put on chemo."
Unable to work, with medical bills to pay, and a landlord that raised their rent by $1,000 during the pandemic, the family was in trouble.
"The house was sold and they gave us 30 days to move," she said. "We had savings. Those savings were used to house our children at Red Roof. We exhausted our money after four months."
She reached out to her kids' school for help, and that's when they were introduced to Connect Familia, and found placement in a women's shelter.
"We partner with folks like Neighbors 4 Neighbors and so many others, to make sure that we are able to wrap services around that family and not only services, but also remind them that life happens," Connect Familia CEO Betty Alanso said. "It can happen to any of us."
While they figure out long-term solutions, Taina Lopez won't have to worry about how to give her kids Christmas gifts this year.
"The kids were able to make a list each of stuff that they would love for Christmas," Lopez said, "and it's up to the donor, what they can do for the family."
There are still close to 200 families that are looking to be adopted for the holidays to make sure their kids get presents, just like the Lopez kids. If you want to adopt a family for the holidays, you can find out more .
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