February 21, 2020

Quaden Bayles was brutally bullied, but the world has his back.

In a heartbreaking video shared by his mother, Yarraka Bayles, the 9-year old Australian boy cries and says he wants to kill himself after being targeted by bullies at school for his dwarfism.

In the wrenching video, posted on Facebook Tuesday, as Quaden sobs and threatens self harm, his clearly heartbroken mother explains, “This is the impact that bullying has on a nine-year-old kid that just wants to go to school, get an education and have fun.” She beseeches parents, teachers and community leaders, “Can you please educate your children, your families, your friends?”

Bayles said her son’s school has an “amazing support” system in place, according to the only interview she has done so far, which was with Australian news outlet, SBS.com. But that support, Bayles said, is insufficient in the face of bullying. Those cruel incidents have finally taken their toll on the boy and she has reportedly withdrawn him from the school indefinitely.

The devastating clip has gone viral with words of support pouring in from around the globe. The hashtags #WeStandWithQuaden and the words #StopBullying were trending on social media as people shared their own battles against bullying and urged Quaden to “stay strong” and know that he is not alone.

Australian actor Hugh Jackman tweeted a video of support, telling the young boy, “You are stronger than you know, mate” and urging people to “be kind” to each other.

Actor Jon Bernthal and WWE wrestler Lexi Kaufman have offered their support, too. U.S. comedian Brad Williams, who has the same dwarfism condition of Achondroplasia as Quaden, established a GoFundMe page to send Bayles on a trip to Disneyland in California. “This isn’t just for Quaden, this is for anyone who has been bullied in their lives and told they weren’t good enough,” said Williams. As of late Friday morning, people around the world donated over $238,000.

Sports teams in Australia have also rallied behind Quaden. Bayles, who is Aboriginal Australian, has been invited to lead the Indigenous All-Stars rugby team on to the field before their game in Queensland on Saturday.

Perhaps more touching than the celebrities weighing in are the words of support from children around the world, sharing messages of friendship for the young boy.

Contact us at editors@time.com.

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