Daily US Times, Queensland: A fund to send a nine-year-old Australian boy to Disneyland crossed $300,000 after a video of his deep distress over being bullied went viral.
The video shows Quaden Bayles, the boy, crying after he was targeted at school for his dwarfism. His mother posted the video online saying “This is what bullying does.” In the video, the boy was saying he wants to end his life.
After the video went viral, US comedian Brad Williams set a page on GoFundMe to raise money to send the boy to Disneyland. The fund has now raised 30 times more than its $10,000 target.
Thousands of people have shown their support the Quaden, while the National Rugby League’s Indigenous All Stars team has also invited Quaden to lead out the side for their match against the Maori All-Stars on Saturday.
Celebrity actor Hugh Jackman and basketball player Enes Kanter have also spoken out and addressed the bully problem and the impact of it in people’s lives. Other parents from across the world also have shared video messages from their children.
Jackman told Quaden in a social media message to the Australian boy “you are stronger than you know, mate” and called on everyone to “be kind”.
After the video became the talk of the internet, Yarraka Bayles, the mother of the boy said she hoped her son’s experience was raising awareness over the effects of bullying.
“We are losing way too many people because of bullying, because of discrimination, because of racism. There’s so many factors of bullying,” she said.
Mentionaning her son’s ‘very real suicidal attempts’, she said: “It’s every parent’s worst nightmare losing their babies and for me, that’s my reality every day.”
“On top of that, being an Aboriginal boy with a disability, people don’t understand that’s a double-edged sword. There’s racism and then there’s discrimination because of the disability,” she added.
What happens in the video?
The six-minute video was posted on Tuesday. In the video, Ms. Bayles describes the relentless bullying experienced by her son every day. The family, who are Aboriginal Australian, live in Queensland.
“I’ve just picked my son up from school, witnessed a bullying episode, rang the principal, and I want people to know – parents, educators, teachers – this is the effect that bullying has,” Ms. Bayle says as her son sobs.
This is an everyday situation for Quaden, said her mother.
“Can you please educate your children, your families, your friends?” she urged.