Credit: Islandpaps/Splash News

Amy Winehouse had a lot to live for before her tragic death at age 27 on July 23 -- including, reportedly, a child to call her own.

Despite her troubled reputation and struggles with substance abuse, the "Rehab" singer was secretly in the process of adopting a little girl from the Caribbean island of St. Lucia.

"Amy was already my mother," Dannika Augustine, 10, told British paper The Daily Mirror. Winehouse met little Dannika during a 2009 trip to St. Lucia, and strived to rescue her from a life of poverty.

"I would call her Mum," Dannika said, "And she would call me her daughter. She took care of me, and we had fun together. I loved her, and she loved me."

Although aware of Winehouse's addiction to drugs and alcohol, Dannika's family supported the multi-platinum selling star's move to adopt the little girl and eventually bring her to London -- and "has been crying" since her death two weekends ago, a family member told the New York Post.

"Amy loved Dannika with all her heart," Dannika's grandmother Marjorie Lambert told the Mirror. "I don't know why Amy took to Dannika above all the other children on the island, but from the moment they met, they were inseparable. They would spend all day playing, horse-riding and walking up and down the beach hand in hand."

Dannika's parents Nadia Germaine and Vid Augustine (who lives in Germany) also approved of Winehouse's adoption plans.

"I thanked Amy for taking care of my daughter, and she said, 'Dannika is taking care of me. I couldn't live without her,' " Vid Augustine said. "I knew [Winehouse] could give my daughter a wonderful life."