A stand-up comedian raised over $ 250,000 (£ 128,000) to send a bullied nine-year-old Australian boy with dwarfism to Disneyland after breaking hearts all over the world.
Brad Williams, who appeared on Jimmy Kimmel Live and the Tonight Show, set up a GoFundMe page for Quaden Bayles on Thursday after the boy’s mother cried a video of him and said, “Give me a rope, I want to kill myself.” .
Mr. Williams, who also has dwarfism, wrote: “I am drafting this GoFundMe to let Quaden know that bullying is not tolerated and that he is a wonderful person who deserves joy.”
Starting on Friday, more than 9,000 people have donated to the page and raised a total of $ 266,890 (£ 136,564).
Quaden has received support from the public and celebrities such as Hugh Jackman, Mark Hamill, Eric Trump and the British paralympic swimmer Ellie Simmonds.
The nine-year-old Aboriginal boy has since spoken out to encourage others to “stand up for yourself,” while his mother said he had “gone from the worst day of his life to the best day of his life.”
Comedian Brad Williams (photo right) set up a GoFundMe page for Quaden Bayles (left) on Thursday after the boy’s mother shared a heartbreaking video of her son
In conversation with NITV in the aftermath of the viral images, Quaden (pictured with his mother) encouraged others to stand up for themselves when faced with a bully. “If you are bullied, just stand up for yourself and don’t listen to what they say,” he said
“I want to fly Quaden and his mother to America, arrange a nice hotel for them and take them to Disneyland,” said Mr. Williams on the fundraising page.
“This is not only for Quaden, this is for everyone who has been bullied in his life and said they were not good enough.
“Let’s show Quaden and others that there is good in the world and that they are worth it.”
Mr. Williams, from California, said that if too much was donated, the excess would be given to anti-bullying charities.
The American comedian, who is 4ft 4in long, appeared on TV shows including Jimmy Kimmel Live and the Tonight Show and has been described as “one of the funniest, most in-demand comedians working today.”
It came when Quaden and his mother Yarraka appeared on the native Australian TV channel NITV today to thank the supporters of the nine year old.
During the interview, Quaden encouraged others to stand up for themselves when they face a bully.
“If you are bullied, just stand up for yourself and don’t listen to what they say,” he said.
The nine-year-old believes that parents should inform their children about people with disabilities to prevent further bullying.
“Parents must make their children kind to people with disabilities,” he said.
Mrs. Bayles said her “strong” son wants other people to know how he feels and no longer wants to suffer “in silence.”
“It’s 2020 and bullying is at a record high, and especially in our communities, people don’t understand that if you’re native, you’re already against discrimination and racism,” she said.
Describing the reaction to the video, Quaden’s mother said, “Not in our wildest dreams, we would have thought it would go global and create such a media frenzy.”
After Quaden was invited to lead the Native All Stars rugby team, she said, “He said it went from the worst day of his life to the best day of his life, which can be summed up perfectly.
“His dream is to be a footy player. That will not be a reality. This (on Saturday) is the closest to him to play soccer. That is enough for us.
“He is very excited (but) he has to find his footy boots.”
Yarraka Bayles hoped that her son’s video helped raise awareness about not only bullying, but also about suicide rates in Australia.
“It’s every parent’s worst nightmare to lose their babies and that’s my reality every day,” she said.
“I have to prepare for the worst, because everything he goes through with his medical condition and the suicide attempts are very real and people don’t understand that.”
The mother, an Aboriginal rights activist, said her son has made several attempts to take his own life
Quaden’s mother Yarraka, who is from Brisbane, filmed her son (pictured together) crying in the car after she picked him up from school on Wednesday and shared the video publicly on Facebook
Quaden Bayles (photo), a nine-year-old boy who said he wanted to commit suicide after being bullied for his dwarfism, urged others to stand up for himself
What is Achondroplasia?
Achondroplasia is a disease of bone growth that prevents cartilage (especially in the long bones of the arms and legs) from turning into bone.
It is characterized by a limited range of movement at the elbows, large head dimensions (macrocephaly), small fingers and normal intelligence.
Achondroplasia can cause health complications, such as interruption of breathing (apnea), obesity, recurring ear infections and an exaggerated inward facing curvature of the lumbar spine.
People with dwarfism have a normal life expectancy.
Source: US Department of Health
The video has sparked a burst of sympathy for the nine-year-old of members of the public and celebrities, including Hugh Jackman.
‘You are stronger than you know, mate. And no matter what happens, you have a friend in me, “said the Hollywood actor in a video posted on his Twitter account.
Mark Hamill, who played Luke Skywalker in the Star Wars saga, wrote that “the cruelty is as stunning as it is heartbreaking” after watching the video on Twitter.
Basketball player Boston Celtics Enes Kanter wrote on Twitter: “This is one of the hardest videos I’ve watched. No place in the world for bullies. ”
British paralympic swimmer Ellie Simmonds, who won five Paralympic gold medals for Team GB, said the video was “completely and absolutely heartbreaking.”
“I’m in tears. We don’t need to be reminded of how dangerous and devastating bullying can be, “she said.
‘How can anyone make someone feel like that, let alone a 9-year-old?! Quaden, we are all with you. ”
Donald Trump’s son Eric also took Quaden’s side and called the images “absolutely heartbreaking.”
Australian boxer Billy ‘The Kid’ Dib has offered to help the nine-year-old with one-on-one boxing lessons to keep his bullies at bay.
The former world featherweight champion made the promise after seeing the heartbreaking images.
“I just had a FaceTime chat with the young Quaden, he is really in a good mood today, I also spoke with his mother Yarraka about offering the young Quaden one-on-one boxing sessions and she loves the idea,” wrote he.
“I’m looking forward to teaching this little champion some deadly punches.”
Quaden will also send the Native All-Stars onto the field in their rugby league clash with the Maori All Stars in Queensland on Saturday.
They are competing against New Zealand Maori Kiwis in CBUS Super Stadium on the Gold Coast.
The nine-year-old was caught with NRL star Latrell Mitchell, who put on a South Sydney Rabbitohs sweater after he signed with the club for the 2020 season.
Quaden’s mother Yarraka shared the disturbing video that provided enormous support after she had picked up her son from school on Wednesday.
The schoolboy, who has achondroplasia – the most common type of dwarfism – said to his mother, “Give me a rope, I want to commit suicide.”
In the video, which has been viewed more than three million times, Quaden also said: “I just want to put myself in the heart … I want someone to kill me.”
Quaden also scratched his neck and said, “I want to die … I want to scratch myself.”
Quaden is depicted with NRL star Latrell Mitchell. The nine-year-old will lead the Indigenous All Stars NRL team on Saturday
Mrs. Bayles publicly shared the original video on Facebook in an effort to raise awareness about the consequences of bullying.
She said that she normally tries to keep painful moments like this one private, but that she felt she had no choice but to become public.
“We try to be as positive as possible and only to share the highlights … but this is how bullying affects a nine-year-old child,” she said in the video.
At the start of the five-minute clip, Ms. Bayles said, “I just picked up my son from school, witnessed a bullying episode,” the director called, and I want people to know that this is the effect of bullying. This is what bullying does.
“So please raise your children, your families, your friends, because only one copy is needed … and you wonder why children kill themselves.
‘This is the impact of bullying on a nine-year-old child who just wants to go to school, wants to get an education and wants to have fun, but something happens every fricking day.
‘Another episode, another harassment, another ridicule, another bad name.
While Quaden sobbed, Mrs. Bayles asked for help from everyone who saw the images.
‘So is there any advice or support or something that other parents have done?
“I have good advice, but I need more, I want people to know how much it hurts us as a family,” she said, her voice quivering.
The mother did not comment on details about the last bully incident, but rather said that her son was called a “dwarf” by his classmates.
Mrs. Bayles said her “strong” son wants other people to know how he feels and no longer wants to “suffer in silence”
‘You have friends, including me’: co-actor Jeffrey Dean Morgan, who plays bad guy ‘Negan’ in The Walking Dead, also contacted Quaden on Twitter
Quaden’s mother told it last year Courier Mail that he first attempted suicide three years ago when he was six.
“I was so shocked. I really didn’t think he would even know what or how at the age of six, ”she said.
The mother, an Aboriginal rights activist, said her son has made several attempts to take his own life.
“I explained to him that once you leave, no road comes back, you are gone forever, but he kept trying,” the mother said.
She also said that Quaden was struck by the death of his grandfather and his younger half-brother, who was stillborn.
“He thought if he went to heaven, he would be with his Pop and his little brother,” she said.
She told the newspaper that she was proud that she had spoken in public about asking for help.
In a family report, Quaden’s mother Yarraka said she met the right groups to take a stand against bullying
The father of two Jarrod Urquhart told Daily Mail Australia that the “terrible” video led him to help Quaden and his family.
‘I’ve looked [the video] and thought: “” How can I help? ”, he said.
“My heart breaks to see him so upset.”
Urquhart suggested that his sons, eight-year-old Cooper and two-year-old Carter, could become pen pals with Quaden.
‘They are happy, good luck children. They love sports, they love people a lot, “says Urquhart.
“If they can help this child somehow, so that he doesn’t harm himself, you will feel alone.”
Urquhart said it would be a way to help Quaden get a letter by post from his friends in Sydney once every two weeks.
“[It’s] something to look forward to, “he said.
“It could be cool. If he had a tough day, his friend in Sydney wrote him a letter.
“We can go there and meet him somewhere. As long as it helps the child’s life and makes him happy. ”
Urquhart hopes that Yarraka and Quaden see his suggestion and that the two families can be brought into contact with each other.
For confidential support in Australia, call 24-hour crisis support via Lifeline on 13 11 14
For confidential support in the UK, call the Samaritans on 116123 or visit a local Samaritan branch, see www.samaritans.org for details