The family of 9-year-old Quaden Bayles, the Australian boy whose reaction to being bullied recently went viral, has vowed to give money that was crowdfunded in response to that virality to charity.
Quaden's mother, Yarraka, had posted a clip of her son crying after he was bullied by kids at school because he has dwarfism. In response comedian Brad Williams, who also has dwarfism, started a campaign on GoFundMe to get money to the family so they could pay for a trip to Disneyland. More than $470,000 has been donated, but the family has decided they'd rather that money go to charity than a vacation for them.
They told local media that the gesture to gift them the trip was a touching one, but they'd instead prefer to combat the "real issue."
"What kid wouldn’t want to go to Disneyland, especially if you have lived Quaden’s life,” his aunt, Mundanara Bayles said. "To escape anywhere that is fun, that doesn’t remind him of his day-to-day challenges? But my sister said, ‘you know what, let’s get back to the real issue’. This little fella has been bullied.
"How many suicides, black or white, in our society have happened due to bullying? We want the money to go to community organizations that really need it. As much as we want to go to Disneyland, I think our community would far off benefit from that."
Right now the family is looking at two charities, Dwarfism Awareness Australia, and the Balunu Healing Foundation. The first one of those organizations seems self-explanatory, while the second is "a not for profit, charitable organization focused on the healing of Indigenous youth and people." Quaden's family is aboriginal Australian.
The family also said they're in discussions with Williams, as the comedian had told prospective donators that "excess money" from the campaign would go towards anti-bullying and anti-abuse organizations.
GoFundMe's terms state that donated funds have to be used "solely for the purpose you have stated on and in connection with your campaign."
Since the footage of Quaden spread online he has led a rugby team out to their NRL contest (which explains the lead image), gotten social media support from celebrities, including Hugh Jackman and Enes Kanter, and been sent messages of support from kids worldwide.
The initial video, which was shared last week, has since received more than 20 million views.