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Funds for stabbed teen

UPDATE: 1:30 p.m.

In the time since speaking to Castanet, mother of slain Elijah Beauregard has heard back from her funeral home with the good news that ministry funding has come through to cover the cost of laying Eli to rest. 

"[They were] very apologetic about all the unnecessary hoops they put us through. We are going to be shutting down the GoFundMe page for the funeral cost and donate the money," Steele explained. 

She believes it was the activity on social media that helped spur action. 

Steele wants to thank everyone who reached out and donated in their time of need, and says she is happy that Eli will now get to rest. 

ORIGINAL: 1:10 p.m.

It has been nearly two weeks since 16-year-old Elijah Beauregard was fatally stabbed in Kelowna, and his mother is still struggling to find the funds to have him put to rest. 

Emily Steele is devastated by the loss of her son, who spent time growing up with her in Penticton but had been living on the streets in Kelowna by choice at the time of his death. 

"He was very much loved and he is going to be sorely missed. Everybody's just crushed, and now to have this, it just feels like a kick in the teeth," Steele said. 

She has been trying desperately to get help with funding for his cremation and funeral home costs from the Ministry of Social Development, the Ministry of Children and Family Development and Victim Services, but has been stuck jumping through hoops — providing her own bank statements to prove she was living paycheque to paycheque, waiting for days while being passed back and forth between ministries, to finally hit another wall on Tuesday. 

"They needed [Eli's father's] bank statement, even though Eli was in my primary care, I was his primary guardian, so now we're stuck waiting for approval with Rob's bank statement as well," Steele said. "We're no closer to any answers on whether they're going to cover us or not."

That's when a woman Steele describes as "a grandmother figure" to Eli stepped in, setting up a GoFundMe to help. 

Steele said the struggle with provincial funding has been especially stressful on top of trying to mourn her young son. 

"It was unforeseen, it's not like I had this money saved or even have life insurance, I mean he was 16," Steele said. "We don't even really want a funeral, just close family, our father and I to say one last goodbye and have him cremated. I just want him to rest."



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