Kelowna teen's death devastates street youth, outreach workers - InfoNews

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Kelowna teen's death devastates street youth, outreach workers

Eli Beauregard is pictured with B.C. musician Merkules.
Image Credit: FACEBOOK/Merkules
July 13, 2019 - 12:00 PM

KELOWNA - Eli Beauregard’s death has left a mark on Kelowna’s street population that won’t soon be erased.  

“The kids who knew Eli are devastated and so are the staff who worked with him,” said Diane Entwistle, CEO of the Boys and Girls Club, which runs the youth shelter that housed Eli in his last three months.

His parents and his family and friends are trying to come to grips with the loss of a 16-year-old and that’s difficult for everybody.”

To that end, there were two candlelight vigils for Eli over the weekend — one in Penticton the other in Kelowna. Eli’s dad Robyn organized the events and said the process of speaking about Eli has been healing for him.

“For me, it’s the best way to heal, to get on the streets and make a difference or hear what people have to say and go places my son went,” he said.

“Going places I know he was with his friends, it was a neat feeling that came over me.”

Boys and Girls Club staff are also working to lessen the blow to the young people who knew Eli.

“In this line of work we’ve had to deal with deaths of young people previously, so we have an emergency response plan that kicks in and critical stress debriefing that happens with staff and kids who wish to participate,” said Entwistle, likening the process to what happens in schools when a young person dies.

She noted that like anyone who is grieving, it’s most impactful when it’s a person you can relate to and that’s just one of many reasons why it’s been so hard on the other street youth.

Eli was stabbed on June 27 and died five days later.

He was wounded in the arm, and in the days that followed his arm was amputated and his condition worsened significantly. Although there was an arrest in the immediate aftermath, there are no charges laid in his death.

Robyn has said that the police have a good idea who was behind the violence, and they will have more information in the days ahead.


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