Five years ago, James and Devonda Friday of Charlotte, North Carolina, were featured on Extreme Makeover: Home Edition. The Fridays had seven children, five who had just been adopted, living in a small family home.
The show converted their home into an 8-bedroom mansion and created a store for their nonprofit organization called "House of Hope."
But now, two of the adopted children who have just become adults, Kamaya and her brother Chris, are saying that they and their three other biological siblings were kicked out of the house as soon as the cameras packed up.
Chris recently told WSOCTV that he was sent to a group home because of a bad attitude a few months after recording the show. A few months later, Kamaya was sent to another group home and like Chris, was told that the move was only temporary.
Within a year, they say that all five adopted children were gone from the home.
"I know it was all about the money. From the first day, it was all about the money," Chris said. They believe that their adoptive parents only took them in so that they could have their house renovated.
In addition, Kamaya alleges that Devonda Friday used many of the gift cards donated to her non-profit for herself. When Chris asked Devonda about it she told him "not to worry about it."
Chris also said the Fridays drove a mini-van before the show but upgraded to a Mercedes Benz convertible soon after.
WSOCTV confirmed that the nonprofit store now lays empty, but that James and Devonda Friday still live in the home, which more than doubled in value since the makeover.
James Friday denied the claims in a phone interview:
"Listen, no one kicked Chris or Kamaya out of the home," he said, claiming that they wanted to leave.
Friday said the Department of Social Services got involved and the three other children were removed from the home, but he wouldn't explain any further.
As for the claims that the gift cards were spent on themselves, Friday also denies them...
"That's ridiculous. That's ridiculous. We bought 200 pairs of shoes with those gift cards at Sears for a church uptown that was doing mission work. We've done no wrong."
There was a family court hearing in 2015 to try and get the adopted kids back, but those court records are unreleased.
"They went to court trying to get us all back, but I think it was about the money, too," Chris said.
"The judge he gets upset and is like, ‘You leave these kids life for a whole year, then try to come back a year later and say you want them back. It doesn't work like that,’" Kamaya said.
Chris and Kamaya say they plan on getting their last names changed from Friday.
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