A young Marton mother battling with her health has experienced the gift of giving from her community this Christmas.
Tali Apisaloma, who suffers from Chondroblastic osteosarcoma, has received more than $1350 over the past five days from donors through a Givealittle page founded by her friend Sarah Thompson.
In 2018, aged 21, Apisaloma was diagnosed with bone cancer while pregnant with her second child.
After her son was born, she had surgery to remove the leg where the cancer was growing.
She also underwent chemotherapy and there was hope she was clear of the tumours.
Thompson said Apisaloma faced the challenge with a smile, her faith and the support of her loving family and friends.
But this year she became pregnant again and found out four weeks before she gave birth in November that the cancer had returned and had spread to her lungs and her brain.
She said her baby boy was born healthy and there were no complications with the birth.
Apisaloma has now finished radiation and on January 6 will meet with her doctor to see when chemotherapy can start.
"I'm scared and nervous but I do my best for my kids."
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Over the past year she has had to travel to Palmerston North Hospital many times for treatment and visits to her doctor.
Her husband Toetu has stopped working to help raise their three children, all aged under 2.
The couple are both from Samoa but only met after they had been living in New Zealand for about five years.
Exhausted from the battle so far, Apisaloma said she is just taking one day at a time as they go into a new year.
Thompson described her friend as "tired but she is still smiling".
Apisaloma and her children have never met her husband's family and he hopes one day he can take them back to Samoa for a visit to make more memories as a new family.
For now Thompson hopes funds can be raised to ensure Apisaloma and her family are cared for and bills are paid as she continues to fight the disease.
The Givealittle page can be found at https://givealittle.co.nz/cause/e-sili-le-manuia-o-le-nate-foai-i-lo-le-nate-talia