Funeral poverty: one woman's battle to pay for her son's burial
I feel, in the pain right now I want, my son I can't get him back he's dead and I'm sitting, here worrying about finding, the money I'm worrying about charity, giving us the money I'm worrying about you know I have to bury my son I'm worried about my kids, I still can't even grieve the way I want to grieve the. UK, the, UK are, you ready for Rjay my, man's got moves. Criminal, Raheem, Johnson, died unexpectedly in, February, at the age of 21. His. Mother Amanda, now has to find several thousand, pounds to pay for his funeral money, she simply doesn't have I. Just. Had I had enough I had, enough of the whole the, whole thing where, would you find nine thousand pound like. Where would, you find that money this, is just to bury you after. Being encouraged, to shop around Amanda. Found an undertaker, willing to do the funeral for 4,000, pounds, we have to get this money by Tuesday that's. Saudi. Sunday Monday that's, four days I mean four. Days that's. No time, Rahim's. Girlfriend, Chelsea has been helping Amanda navigate, the slow complicated. And confusing process, of applying for charitable, grants and loans, from governmental departments. Like the DWP. Run. So many people up asking. To do installment, payments, and they're saying no even if you no. Matter how much you're pouring hotter and they're explaining the situation yeah, it seems like nobody wanted. Wanted, to support, us and this is how we, are feeling like. In some way that we're failing him. Because. We can't get this feeling so weird. You're, just going through the same things every single day saying, the same things every single day. You're. Telling yourself the same things every day you're asking yourself the same questions every day I mean. Tomorrow we get up and this is the first thing that we're gonna be onto we, get up crack ass a dawn to sort things out and it's. A million things having. To do with your emotions, but also also professionals. Trying to get information on, the, coroner the funeral, everything, it's. All too much the whole situation is all too much. Friends. Have raised over 800, pounds to help with the funeral costs but it won't be enough on its own in. Order to understand, her options. Amanda has been put in touch with down to earth a charity. Who provide free support, and advice for, people struggling to pay for. I. Don't. Like, hearing the bit where you. Have someone buried. On top. Amanda. Visits the local cemetery with her daughter Lori and friend Cass to, see the area set aside for public burials. The. 4,000, pounds will pay for a shared unmarked. Grave somewhere. Around here. From, here then these. Are the people give. Me that on what nothing and, over there is the, people I have like on the other side they. Got they've. Got the money they can pay for it they got their family or friends, they can help them. So. This is the side you will go with. The working week over Amanda, faces, and certain, weekend waiting to hear if any of the loan she is applied for will be accepted, in time for the funeral directors, Tuesday, deadline. Have. There, been any developments over the weekend. For. Now home said he think it's best to put it off for. Next week so that will give us enough time so. That we. Can come up with the money but there is I mean there's an amount of time that you have before. You. You can't really sort of see the body again. It's. It's, just getting that information I, suppose isn't it yeah. It's. All hard. Just. Want it like I just, wish I could do like, more. With. No family in the UK aside from her children Amanda's, friend Enid arrives to offer support, what do you mean by a community grave, trying, to get hold of the money is consuming, much of their time but Amanda still doesn't know how her son died so, is in regular contact with the police you, guys have all the recordings, of what happened the time and the date I don't want it I don't want to be right. Now I got, a book with things that written down I want. Information. On, paper, because. It's my son and I'm going to bury that, is what I want at the moment I'm really, really annoyed to the fact where I haven't got no time, to grieve I have. No time to grieve for, my son, because. I have to worry about a million, things, how. Do I feel I feel really broken now really, really hot I want my son I can't, get him during. This phone call Amanda, receives another call from the funeral director. He's. Been working hard behind the scenes to find a solution. Hello. Hello. Okay. So we got.
We. Got eight. 810. Yeah. Yeah. We've, got. 1110, pound. By. Tomorrow. So. That's just looking at payday loans. He. Will get the payday loan me on demand so we both get out two separate loans. But. The pay day, loans, you don't have a lot of time to be back up to feed back when you get. There's. So many options, I've. Gone through it so many times and there's up to so many months that you can pay it back you, can go on a site where it will compare loads. Of different, payday. Loans and it will give you the best one at. The top you know for how much you pay, back obviously with interest. This. Is so crazy. Mad. Yeah. DeGeneres. Will you be, having an open coffin. I. Don't. Know. You. Know we we are here we get in the money and stuff like that but I just, don't want that. We. Only have like just one. Week or even like four days. Four. Days why, is today today's money you. Can do everyday if you want to. He's. Not dying not. Bad, no not. Going there no, you only have four days to. It's. Not just going there you. Know he's like you're, not gonna see them ever again. And. That is what gave me really upset because. Even, even. Though he's dead now we, can go and see him but that are we Kong you, know you can't see you just go into the grave and that's it. How. Did you deal with that. Sometimes. You have to face reality because. That. Is relating. My. Daughter died a long time ago she was 11 she was back in gear and I was standing for Harlan and. She. Died suddenly - I. Had. A phone call. She. Was dead. It. Was a long time ago but I am I'm. Not quite for my daughter not trust me um. As. The years go by the. Pain get less and less. Basically. What you're saying is that like, to forget, and face like yeah no no no no no no no no no no no you can never forget what I'm saying it's, your emotion it's it's not it's not an open wound, right now yeah, all right yeah it's never close but, it does get easier. It. Does get easier. I. Don't. Know how to operate this thing you know. Every. Time I've got this thing on that I've cut people off how. Do you supposed to answer this. Hi. We, got some good news for you I neither been news of some sort I'm glad it's good. Hi. Everyone hi tell. Me your news. Our. News, is that this. Morning I got a call from Marty, and he said guess what the, DWP. Has. Paid him four thousand, pounds. Four. Thousand, pound, I couldn't. Even cry I was, I'm so happy I said, to him when I come up there I said I've got to give you a big hug. You. Got to take your sunglasses off, we're indoors now. With. The burial cost now covered in fact by the local council, Amanda, can finally, turn her attention to, planning the funeral itself the.
Celebrant, Arrives to help write Rahim's eulogy, so, what I'm gonna do is I'm gonna ask you it's. Very easy so we'll start off so, do. You remember what, you were like when you were did. You have any cravings oh yes. Just. Dry. In. A spoon yeah with you, put learn will, you put sugar so. You mix me. When. Did he meet Chelsea where. Did he meet her my. House. No. I was actually I called him up um. I. Went out on a night owl I called him up a half four in the morning drunk, asked him to come to my house and he actually got on the train and come. Out so you met him on in a club no, Facebook. You. Met him you, know how many come to my house oh one of those you know when you scroll through and you say do you know it's person we actually have no mutual friends, no mutual friends, actually we, didn't know each other and then he just added me and you. Started talking on Facebook, you booty-call damn yeah, anyways. They're like a, dream, I. Forgot. You was coming so, I went upstairs to bed and my mom away from the door to him is like yeah she's upstairs you know. My. Mom really liked him they really. Liked him but. One on chocolates, fast I mean that, smooth. Yeah. So. That's. It really isn't it I mean you just that's, you. Next. Thing you know you're getting the phone call like Amanda did. The. Next few days aren't gonna be easy I can't even pretend to tell you what my day is gonna be like if. You can in some way start to say goodbye to him. If. You can do it sooner rather than later Friday, is gonna be really hard if you don't try. And sacrifice in this day. It's. Incredibly. A burial, is incredibly. Emotional, let's, say goodbye to him to me no all, right okay, it's I. Understand. What you mean I understand. Ready. Go. At. This anger stage and. There are different types of night you want to smash there probably. A good idea, to. Do maybe, just go some wins. I. Think, he's up there, commander. Is on her way to the funeral parlor for, what might be her last opportunity. To see Raheem Oh. Any. Day now. Yeah. She. Needs to be breathing for a boy you know unfortunately, she, hasn't had the time to do it.
Most. People walk for this door and you know they have to get a loan or debt to go for the government, to. Get funds it. Probably a long time before I end up and again in five years is probably a second one. In. This game we see it we've seen we've, seen loads of things you. Know children young moms young fathers just. Passing. Away and, unfortunately. Families have been left to try, and find the money to bury, their loved ones yeah there. Is a problem there. Is a problem in, the funeral industry. Martin. Takes Amanda, to see the new plot here secured, for rain he's, an inner wall so he's gonna be down the bottom. Yeah. Wow. He's. On his own that's the main thing yeah. Thank. God for that. All. Of that fighting. We. Did it guys, teamwork, teamwork, Hey. So, where did we come from, Oh. Campaign. - over there and then you go back there like over. There was like somewhere like date like this. It's. The day of the funeral but. After all she has been through Amanda. Is still not ready to say goodbye. You. Know three. Weeks ago. We. Were not like this, no. It. Feels so relief to be like this like. A big, relief, okay. That's, I. Gotta. Be like really focus, at the moment yeah. Yeah, just, take every minute as it comes Amanda, it's. The only thing you can do. I. Think. People should be able to go through grief in the, way that. They supposed, to you we're not having to go through 12, or 20 people and all, of them are telling you no no no you can't do this we can't do we need this we need that you. Feel sick you feel hurt you, feel broken-down you, feel like everyone. Out days against, you I just. Wish. That you know the government will have something, straight forward so other, people wouldn't. Go through what, I've been through. You.