LAS VEGAS (KTNV) - An ABC News special Friday night profiled families around the U.S. struggling to make ends meet.
We learned there are a lot of people struggling with those same crushing realities right here in the valley.
Roxana Valladares is one of those people.
She has a full-time job with the Clark County Public Defender's Office, but as a single mother of a 9-year-old girl, she says the salary isn't enough for her as a sole breadwinner.
"How can I make this last $20 that I have stretch?" Valladares said she asks every payday. "I run to the 99 Cent Store, pick up the snacks, the bread, the milk and I end up with like $19.99 [worth of purchases.]"
A large manila folder tucked away in her bedroom looms large. It carries all her unpaid bills. Many of them are hospital bills.
She's a diabetic and her daughter, Estefania, always needs an EpiPen around for her allergies.
Valladares says she's constantly on the lookout for side jobs.
"It's overwhelming and it gets to the point where you just feel like giving up," she said. "What do I do?"
ShaRhonda Ramos is Valladares' godsister. Ramos is married with a son of her own.
The families lean on each other for support.
The scariest part for the women is that their lives get derailed with just a cough or a sniffle.
"One of them gets sick, just one, everything gets thrown into a turmoil," Ramos said.
They use natural home remedies to boost everyone's immune system.