SPEAK even if your voice shakes, those were the words bullying victim Amy ‘Dolly’ Everett wrote before she took her own life.
The words have inspired country singer-songwriter Tom Curtain and Sara Storer’s new single Speak Up, which raises funds for Dolly’s Dream.
“It really struck me, you don’t know what people are going through so it makes us think about checking in with our mates to see how they’re feeling,” Mr Curtain said.
“I’d known the girls growing up camp drafting in the Northern Territory, they were very polite girls who always had smiles on their faces, they were a lot of fun.
“It’s devastating, I think everyone knew the family up here and it just ripped the heart right out of them.”
Dolly lived on a remote cattle station in the Northern Territory, just outside Mr Curtain’s hometown of Katherine.
She went to Scots PGC College and was relentlessly bullied by students before her death in January.
Mr Curtain invited Dolly’s parents, Kate and Tick, to his home to watch the film clip for the first time.
“They were very emotional,” he said.
“They said Dolly cooked them tea that night, they had no idea anything was going on and I suppose this whole cyberbullying thing is more prolific than we ever thought.”
Travelling to a number of schools, Mr Curtain said he wants teachers to take the song on board in classrooms.
“I’m touring at the end of the year for four months, visiting a lot of schools and spreading the anti-bullying message, we’re trying to bring it to the forefront,” he said.
His music career started more than 20 years ago when Mr Curtain learned the guitar and worked with the Isolated Children’s and Parents Association singing at School of the Air functions.
All of the funds raised from the Speak Up go towards Dolly’s Dream, a foundation set up by her family and friends to prevent the lives of other children being lost.
“That’s my soft spot I suppose, I feel it’s my obligation to help spread the word – it’s not really about me, I’m just a vessel,” he said.
The song has 180,000 views on Facebook and is number four on Itunes singles.
Mr Curtain and Ms Storer were involved in the Dreaming Under the Stars event in Katherine, which raised $170,000 for Dolly’s Dream.
For more information visit katherineoutbackexperience.com.au.
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