A crowdfunding campaign to assist an Abbotsford family of five orphaned kids has raised more than $125,000, as of May 30.
The GoFundMe campaign was created on May 9 in support of the Saint Ange family, with hopes of raising enough money to sustain the family until the youngest – age 15 – has graduated.
Eldest brother Ryan Saint Ange was murdered in Abbotsford in 2012. Less than a year ago, their mother, Mary Moustache (Saint Ange), died unexpectedly.
Their father, a long-haul truck driver, stepped in to help financially, but he passed away on May 7 of this year, due to a medical condition.
Left behind are two teenage girls, Kelsy and Chelsy, ages 15 and 17; a teen boy, Wade, 16; and Nina and Nadine, both in their 20s.
The oldest girls are applying for legal guardianship of their younger siblings, but they work at low-income jobs. The family lives in a rental unit.
A social worker, Jennifer Jane Macpherson, has stepped in to help the family and started the GoFundMe campaign.
“I want them to know that they are precious and that there is a community here to help,” she said on the website.
Macpherson said she will assist the older girls with parenting skills, help them budget their time and resources, and help them access social service resources available to them.
She said she will advocate for them with schools, social workers, medical professionals and in any other way they require.
The goal of the crowdfunding campaign is to raise enough money and resources to support the family over the next three years, including for rent, food, utilities, health care, education costs, clothing, gifts and more.
Macpherson has set up a joint account with Nadine and will co-manage the funds with her.
Several businesses have come forward to offer additional support to the family.
Dr. Kelly Jordan in Vancouver will provide dental care to all five kids over the next five years, while Aldergrove Animal Hospital will provide veterinary care for their dog and cat.
Sleep Country Canada has provided new beds, and Bed, Bath and Beyond is supplying all of the bedding and other household items.
Abbotsford Nissan has provided a generous donations, as well as job opportunities and car maintenance and repairs.
Big Bro Furniture is providing a new dining set and other furniture.
The campaign can be accessed at gofundme.com/wade-saint-ange-family.