Child bullied over dwarfism leads out all-star rugby team as crowdfunding nears half a million

by crypto journalist

A nine-year-old Australian boy who prompted a public outpouring of support after being bullied at school for his dwarfism has led out an all-star indigenous rugby league team as crowdfunding for the child nears the half a million mark.

Quaden Bayles, who lives with dwarfism-causing genetic disorder achondroplasia, was filmed by his mother Yarraka in a state of distress as she attempted to highlight the pain that bullying can cause.

Following a global display of empathy, the boy – who himself is aboriginal Australian – was asked to lead the Indigenous All Star rugby league team onto the field at the Cbus Super Stadium ahead of their clash with the Maori All Stars in Queensland.

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In an invitation video to the child, fullback Rabbitoh Latrell Mitchell said: “We’ve got your back and just want to make sure that you are doing alright … we want you around, we want you to lead us out on the weekend”.

As the pre-game procession began Quaden could be seen holding the hand of team captain Joel Tompson while walking onto the pitch to the roars of the crowd.

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World news in pictures

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World news in pictures

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People dressed in traditional Czech folklore costumes parade through the village of Vortova near the east Bohemian city of Pardubice during the traditional Masopust carnival. The festival marks the beginning of Lent. This folk tradition of the carnival parade of masks was registered in the UNESCO List of the Intagible Cultural Heritage of Humanity in 2010

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An Iranian woman wearing a face mask shows her inked finger after casting her ballot at a polling station set up at the Abdol Azim shrine during the parliamentary elections in Shahr-e-Ray, Tehran Province, Iran. Iranians are heading to the polls to elect their representatives to the Islamic Consultative Assembly amid a worsening economic crisis and escalating tensions with the US

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Roger Stone, former advisor to US President Donald Trump arrives at court prior to his sentencing hearing. Trump’s longtime aide will be sentenced in a case that has caused a stir in Washington following meddling by the US president and his attorney general. Stone, one of the Republican leader’s allies and “oldest friends,” was convicted in November of lying to Congress, tampering with a witness and obstructing the House investigation into whether the Trump campaign coordinated with Russia to cheat in the 2016 election

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Members of the Kazakh Emergencies Ministry take cover during a controlled explosion triggering an avalanche for public safety in the Tien Shan mountains outside Almaty, Kazakhstan

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Women chant slogans during a demonstration against gender violence outside the National Palace, in Mexico City. Dozens of women protested over the murder of a seven-year-old girl in the Mexican capital, a case that generated anger and outrage. The murder of the minor shocked the country two days after hundreds of women protested in several cities in Mexico over the femicide of Ingrid Escamilla, a 25-year-old woman who was killed by her partner north of the Mexican capital

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Dogs wearing masks are seen at a main shopping area, in downtown Shanghai, China, as the country is hit by an outbreak of a new coronavirus

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Men dressed in loincloths prepare to snatch a wooden stick called “shingi” tossed by the priest during a naked festival at Saidaiji Temple in Okayama, Okayama Prefecture Japan February 15, 2020. The person who grabs the wooden stick is considered the “luckiest man of the year”.

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Sri Lanka’s military march with national flags during the 72nd independence day ceremony, in Colombo

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Stefan Kraft soars through the air during a qualifying session for the men’s large hill individual competition at the FIS Ski Jumping World Cup event in Sapporo, Japan

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Commuters with protective facemasks wait to board a canal boat at Pratunam Pier in Bangkok. A Thai surgical mask factory, producing 10 million masks a month, increased working hours to cope with the rising demand following the outbreak of the coronavirus in China

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An Israeli soldier fires teargas towards Palestinian protestors during a demonstration in al-Aroub Palestinian refugee camp, between the West Bank towns of Hebron and Bethlehem

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Firefighters with their face painted with the movie character ‘Joker’, participate in a demonstration against the pension reforms and for better work conditions in Paris

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Flowers outside Bryant Gymnasium at Lower Merion High School, in Philadelphia, as people pay their respects after basketball legend Kobe Bryant died in a helicopter crash

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US singer-songwriter Lizzo performs onstage during the 62nd Annual Grammy Awards in Los Angeles

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A Lebanese anti-government protester in makeshift protective gear stands under a water jet as security forces move to disperse a demonstration near government headquarters at the Grand Serail, in downtown Beirut

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A protester holds a sign reading “On the move” mocking the LREM party’s slogan during a demonstration in Paris, as part as a nationwide multi-sector strike against the French government’s pensions overhaul

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A Chinese police officer wears a protective mask as he stands guard next to an ad before the annual Spring Festival at a Beijing railway station. The number of cases of a deadly new coronavirus rose to over 500 in mainland China as health officials locked down the city of Wuhan in an effort to contain the spread of the pneumonia-like disease which medicals experts have been confirmed can be passed from human to human

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Visitors wear face masks as they sit inside the Venetian casino hotel resort in Macau, after the former Portuguese colony reported its first case of the new SARS-like virus that originated from Wuhan in China.

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Marine One helicopter with US President Donald Trump on board arrives for the 50th World Economic Forum (WEF) in Davos, Switzerland

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A man walks between burning tires during ongoing anti-government protests in Najaf, Iraq

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Britain’s Prime Minister Boris Johnson, Congolese President Denis Sassou Nguesso, Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan, French President Emmanuel Macron, German Chancellor Angela Merkel, (second row, left to right) arab League Secretary General Ahmed Abul Gheit, African Union (AU) Committee Chairman Moussa Faki, European Council President Charles Michel, German Foreign Minister Heiko Maas, US Secretary of State Mike Pompeo pose for a family picture during a Peace summit on Libya at the Chancellery in Berlin

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Sweden’s Jennie-Lee Burmansson competing in the final run of the Freestyle Skiing Womens Freeski Slopestyle at the Leysin Park in Leysin, during the 2020 Lausanne Winter Youth Olympic Games

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Firefighters take part in a demonstration to protest against the attacks against them during interventions in Strasbourg. During the New Year’s Eve night in Strasbourg, two firefighters were notably injured following a projectile thrown onto the window of their truck. Last weekend, three firefighters were victims of a stabbing by a person they came to rescue in the outskirts of the city.

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People enjoy the frozen lake of Houhai in Beijing ahead of the Lunar New Year of the Rat. – The Lunar New Year falls on January 25 this year and marks the Year of the Rat.

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Taiwanese soldiers operate a CM-11 battle tank during an exercise at a military base in Kaohsiung, southern Taiwan

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A resident who briefly returned home to retrieve belongings carries figurines of Jesus Christ and Mother Mary in Laurel, Batangas province, Philippines. The Philippine Institute of Volcanology and Seismology raised the alert level to four out of five, warning that a hazardous eruption could take place anytime, as authorities have evacuated tens of thousands of people from the area

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Mini’s driver Jakub Przygonski and his co-driver Timo Gottschalk compete in Stage 8 of the Dakar 2020 around Wadi Ad-Dawasir

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People take photos of a phreatic explosion from the Taal volcano from the town of Tagaytay in Cavite province, southwest of Manila

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An injured Syrian child cries after being transported to a clinic for treatment following an air strike by pro-regime forces on the nothwestern city of Idlib

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Vets and volunteers treat koalas at Kangaroo Island Wildlife Park, southwest of Adelaide, Australia

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Devotees follow the carriage transporting the statue of the Black Nazarene during an annual religious procession in its honour in Manila. Thousands of barefoot devotees joined the religious procession hoping to touch a centuries-old icon of Jesus Christ, called the Black Nazarene, which is believed to have miraculous powers

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People stand near the wreckage after a Ukrainian plane carrying 176 passengers crashed near Imam Khomeini airport in Tehran

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Mourners gather around a vehicle carrying the coffin of Iranian top general Qasem Soleimani during the final stage of funeral processions, in his hometown Kerman. Soleimani was killed outside Baghdad airport Friday in a drone strike ordered by US President Donald Trump, ratcheting up tensions with Iran which has vowed “severe revenge”. The assassination of the 62-year-old heightened international concern about a new war in the Middle East and rattled financial markets

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Actor Rose McGowan speaks at a news conference outside a Manhattan courthouse after the arrival of Harvey Weinstein, in New York. Weinstein is on trial on charges of rape and sexual assault, more than two years after a torrent of women began accusing him of misconduct

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Mourners march behind a vehicle carrying the coffins of slain major general Qassem Soleimani and others as they pay homage in the Iranian city of Mashhad

50/50 4 January 2020

Rescue personnel search for bodies among mud and debris following a landslide caused by heavy rain in West Java, Indonesia

1/50 22 February 2020

People dressed in traditional Czech folklore costumes parade through the village of Vortova near the east Bohemian city of Pardubice during the traditional Masopust carnival. The festival marks the beginning of Lent. This folk tradition of the carnival parade of masks was registered in the UNESCO List of the Intagible Cultural Heritage of Humanity in 2010

2/50 21 February 2020

An Iranian woman wearing a face mask shows her inked finger after casting her ballot at a polling station set up at the Abdol Azim shrine during the parliamentary elections in Shahr-e-Ray, Tehran Province, Iran. Iranians are heading to the polls to elect their representatives to the Islamic Consultative Assembly amid a worsening economic crisis and escalating tensions with the US

3/50 20 February 2020

Roger Stone, former advisor to US President Donald Trump arrives at court prior to his sentencing hearing. Trump’s longtime aide will be sentenced in a case that has caused a stir in Washington following meddling by the US president and his attorney general. Stone, one of the Republican leader’s allies and “oldest friends,” was convicted in November of lying to Congress, tampering with a witness and obstructing the House investigation into whether the Trump campaign coordinated with Russia to cheat in the 2016 election

4/50 19 February 2020

Members of the Kazakh Emergencies Ministry take cover during a controlled explosion triggering an avalanche for public safety in the Tien Shan mountains outside Almaty, Kazakhstan

5/50 18 February 2020

Women chant slogans during a demonstration against gender violence outside the National Palace, in Mexico City. Dozens of women protested over the murder of a seven-year-old girl in the Mexican capital, a case that generated anger and outrage. The murder of the minor shocked the country two days after hundreds of women protested in several cities in Mexico over the femicide of Ingrid Escamilla, a 25-year-old woman who was killed by her partner north of the Mexican capital

6/50 17 February 2020

People gather at the site of a bomb blast in Quetta, Pakistan

7/50 16 February 2020

Dogs wearing masks are seen at a main shopping area, in downtown Shanghai, China, as the country is hit by an outbreak of a new coronavirus

8/50 15 February 2020

Men dressed in loincloths prepare to snatch a wooden stick called “shingi” tossed by the priest during a naked festival at Saidaiji Temple in Okayama, Okayama Prefecture Japan February 15, 2020. The person who grabs the wooden stick is considered the “luckiest man of the year”.

9/50 14 February 2020

Squirrels eat treats at a ‘Valentine’s day party’ organised for them by staff in Skopje Zoo, North Macedonia

10/50 13 February 2020

Internally displaced children stand on snow near tents at a makeshift camp in Azaz, Syria

11/50 12 February 2020

A model presents a creation from the Marc Jacobs Fall/Winter 2020 collection during New York Fashion Week

12/50 11 February 2020

Hawaiian surfer Kai Lenny rides a wave during the big waves Nazare Tow Surfing Challenge in Nazare

13/50 10 February 2020

A worker wears a protective suit as he stands outside an office building while checking people entering in Beijing, China. The number of cases of a deadly new coronavirus rose to more than 40000 in mainland China. The country has continued to lock down the city of Wuhan in an effort to contain the spread of the pneumonia-like disease which medicals experts have confirmed can be passed from human to human. The number of those who have died from the virus in China climbed to over 900, mostly in Hubei province, and cases have been reported in other countries including the United States, Canada, Australia, Japan, South Korea, India, the United Kingdom, Germany, France and several others. The World Health Organization has warned all governments to be on alert and screening has been stepped up at airports around the world. Some countries, including the United States, have put restrictions on Chinese travellers entering and advised their citizens against travel to China

14/50 9 February 2020

South Korean film director Bong Joon Ho poses with the awards, his film Parasite, won at the Oscars. It was named best picture, becoming the first non-English language film to do so

15/50 8 February 2020

Thailand security forces take cover behind an ambulance as they chase a shooter hidden in a shopping mall after a mass shooting in front of the Terminal 21, in Nakhon Ratchasima

16/50 7 February 2020

A Palestinian demonstrator hurls stones at Israeli forces as tires burn near the Israeli barrier during a protest against the US President Donald Trump’s Middle East peace plan, in the village of Bilin, West Bank

17/50 6 February 2020

Two people were killed and dozens injured when a train derailed outside the city of Lodi in Italy

18/50 5 February 2020

Health teams and fire brigade crews surround a passenger plane which split into three pieces after it skidded off the runway at Istanbul Sabiha Gokcen International Airport in Turkey

19/50 4 February 2020

Sri Lanka’s military march with national flags during the 72nd independence day ceremony, in Colombo

20/50 3 February 2020

Refugees and migrants confront riot police during a demonstration outside the Kara Tepe camp, on the island of Lesbos, Greece, February 3, 2020

21/50 2 February 2020

An Iraqi demonstrator sits amid burning tires blocking a road during ongoing anti-government protests in Najaf, Iraq

22/50 1 February 2020

Horses panic as a spot fire runs through the property of Lawrence and Clair Cowie near Canberra, Australia. The couple stayed to defend their home, with the spot fire destroying part of the property. Chief Minister Andrew Barr declared a State of Emergency on Friday, as the Orroral Valley bushfire continues to burn out of control

23/50 31 January 2020

Stefan Kraft soars through the air during a qualifying session for the men’s large hill individual competition at the FIS Ski Jumping World Cup event in Sapporo, Japan

24/50 30 January 2020

Commuters with protective facemasks wait to board a canal boat at Pratunam Pier in Bangkok. A Thai surgical mask factory, producing 10 million masks a month, increased working hours to cope with the rising demand following the outbreak of the coronavirus in China

25/50 29 January 2020

An Israeli soldier fires teargas towards Palestinian protestors during a demonstration in al-Aroub Palestinian refugee camp, between the West Bank towns of Hebron and Bethlehem

26/50 28 January 2020

Firefighters with their face painted with the movie character ‘Joker’, participate in a demonstration against the pension reforms and for better work conditions in Paris

27/50 27 January 2020

Flowers outside Bryant Gymnasium at Lower Merion High School, in Philadelphia, as people pay their respects after basketball legend Kobe Bryant died in a helicopter crash

28/50 26 January 2020

US singer-songwriter Lizzo performs onstage during the 62nd Annual Grammy Awards in Los Angeles

29/50 25 January 2020

A Lebanese anti-government protester in makeshift protective gear stands under a water jet as security forces move to disperse a demonstration near government headquarters at the Grand Serail, in downtown Beirut

30/50 24 January 2020

A protester holds a sign reading “On the move” mocking the LREM party’s slogan during a demonstration in Paris, as part as a nationwide multi-sector strike against the French government’s pensions overhaul

31/50 23 January 2020

A Chinese police officer wears a protective mask as he stands guard next to an ad before the annual Spring Festival at a Beijing railway station. The number of cases of a deadly new coronavirus rose to over 500 in mainland China as health officials locked down the city of Wuhan in an effort to contain the spread of the pneumonia-like disease which medicals experts have been confirmed can be passed from human to human

32/50 22 January 2020

Visitors wear face masks as they sit inside the Venetian casino hotel resort in Macau, after the former Portuguese colony reported its first case of the new SARS-like virus that originated from Wuhan in China.

33/50 21 January 2020

Marine One helicopter with US President Donald Trump on board arrives for the 50th World Economic Forum (WEF) in Davos, Switzerland

34/50 20 January 2020

A man walks between burning tires during ongoing anti-government protests in Najaf, Iraq

35/50 19 January 2020

Britain’s Prime Minister Boris Johnson, Congolese President Denis Sassou Nguesso, Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan, French President Emmanuel Macron, German Chancellor Angela Merkel, (second row, left to right) arab League Secretary General Ahmed Abul Gheit, African Union (AU) Committee Chairman Moussa Faki, European Council President Charles Michel, German Foreign Minister Heiko Maas, US Secretary of State Mike Pompeo pose for a family picture during a Peace summit on Libya at the Chancellery in Berlin

36/50 18 January 2020

Sweden’s Jennie-Lee Burmansson competing in the final run of the Freestyle Skiing Womens Freeski Slopestyle at the Leysin Park in Leysin, during the 2020 Lausanne Winter Youth Olympic Games

37/50 17 January 2020

Firefighters take part in a demonstration to protest against the attacks against them during interventions in Strasbourg. During the New Year’s Eve night in Strasbourg, two firefighters were notably injured following a projectile thrown onto the window of their truck. Last weekend, three firefighters were victims of a stabbing by a person they came to rescue in the outskirts of the city.

38/50 16 January 2020

People enjoy the frozen lake of Houhai in Beijing ahead of the Lunar New Year of the Rat. – The Lunar New Year falls on January 25 this year and marks the Year of the Rat.

39/50 15 January 2020

Taiwanese soldiers operate a CM-11 battle tank during an exercise at a military base in Kaohsiung, southern Taiwan

40/50 14 January 2020

A resident who briefly returned home to retrieve belongings carries figurines of Jesus Christ and Mother Mary in Laurel, Batangas province, Philippines. The Philippine Institute of Volcanology and Seismology raised the alert level to four out of five, warning that a hazardous eruption could take place anytime, as authorities have evacuated tens of thousands of people from the area

41/50 13 January 2020

Mini’s driver Jakub Przygonski and his co-driver Timo Gottschalk compete in Stage 8 of the Dakar 2020 around Wadi Ad-Dawasir

42/50 12 January 2020

People take photos of a phreatic explosion from the Taal volcano from the town of Tagaytay in Cavite province, southwest of Manila

43/50 11 January 2020

An injured Syrian child cries after being transported to a clinic for treatment following an air strike by pro-regime forces on the nothwestern city of Idlib

44/50 10 January 2020

Vets and volunteers treat koalas at Kangaroo Island Wildlife Park, southwest of Adelaide, Australia

45/50 9 January 2020

Devotees follow the carriage transporting the statue of the Black Nazarene during an annual religious procession in its honour in Manila. Thousands of barefoot devotees joined the religious procession hoping to touch a centuries-old icon of Jesus Christ, called the Black Nazarene, which is believed to have miraculous powers

46/50 8 January 2020

People stand near the wreckage after a Ukrainian plane carrying 176 passengers crashed near Imam Khomeini airport in Tehran

47/50 7 January 2020

Mourners gather around a vehicle carrying the coffin of Iranian top general Qasem Soleimani during the final stage of funeral processions, in his hometown Kerman. Soleimani was killed outside Baghdad airport Friday in a drone strike ordered by US President Donald Trump, ratcheting up tensions with Iran which has vowed “severe revenge”. The assassination of the 62-year-old heightened international concern about a new war in the Middle East and rattled financial markets

48/50 6 January 2020

Actor Rose McGowan speaks at a news conference outside a Manhattan courthouse after the arrival of Harvey Weinstein, in New York. Weinstein is on trial on charges of rape and sexual assault, more than two years after a torrent of women began accusing him of misconduct

49/50 5 January 2020

Mourners march behind a vehicle carrying the coffins of slain major general Qassem Soleimani and others as they pay homage in the Iranian city of Mashhad

50/50 4 January 2020

Rescue personnel search for bodies among mud and debris following a landslide caused by heavy rain in West Java, Indonesia

The team went on to lose to the Maori All Stars with a final score of 30-16.

The gesture came after Quaden’s pain and his mother’s frustration were shared across the globe in a video now viewed more than 20 million times.

“This is what bullying is doing and I want people to know how much this is hurting us as a family,” his mother says in the clip as the child threatened to harm himself.

The video has triggered outpourings of support and solidarity from members of the public and celebrities alike including actors Hugh Jackman, Mark Hamill and Warwick Davis, and musician Cardi B.

Comedian Brad Williams, who also has achondroplasia, set up a crowdfunding page to raise A$10,000 (£5,100) in an attempt to send the child to Disneyland. In the space of two days, sympathetic donors had offered up more than A$450,000.

“We could never have dreamt in our wildest dreams that it would’ve gone worldwide and created such a media frenzy,” Ms Bayles told reporters on Friday.

“There are way too many people suffering in silence and my heart goes out to those families that have already lost their children to bullying. It’s an international crisis and it demands urgent attention.”

This content was originally published here.

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