Stamped in black ink across children’s faces, the words convey a powerful message.
‘‘When you tease, hit, ignore, it scars.’’
‘‘I am a loser, fat, stupid, gay, worthless, invisible.’’
‘‘Please, please, please don’t let me hurt any more.’’
This is the start of a new film clip made by students from three Illawarra Catholic schools to address bullying.
The clip, entitled Fix You, is shot in black and white and is set to the strains of Coldplay’s song of the same name.
As the messages on the students’ faces change from dark and negative to strong and uplifting, the picture changes to colour.
The words continue: ‘‘Help, help, help me. Text me! Notice me. Talk to me. Facebook me. Sit with me. Smile at me. Include me. Laugh with me.’’
‘‘You can make a change, make a difference. Don’t be a bystander. Stand by, stand up, stand strong, stand together. It’s up to you.’’
The video was made by staff and students at St Paul’s Catholic Primary School, Corpus Christi Catholic High School and St Joseph’s College and released in time for yesterday’s National Day of Action Against Bullying and Violence.
It will soon be rolled out to all Catholic schools in the diocese of Wollongong as part of a larger anti-bullying and cyber-bullying education package, but for now it’s having an impact where it’s most needed - online.
Keen to show her work to friends and family, St Joseph’s College Year 12 drama student Aleesha Poidevin uploaded the video to YouTube on Monday.
Five days later it had been clicked on by more than 6500 people in England, Switzerland, the United States and all over Australia.
‘‘I didn’t think about how quickly and instantaneously it would spread; everyone shared it on Facebook and Tumblr and their blog sites - it’s everywhere,’’ Aleesha said.
Year 11 student Harrison Webb helped to develop the concept behind the video and said he was happy the anti-bullying message was spreading.
‘‘It’s really cool because a lot of bullying happens on the internet and technology has kind of upped the intensity of it,’’ he said.
‘‘We’re kind of battling that with technology; we’re fighting fire with fire.’’