VERESDALE Scrub year 4 student Jessie Jarmey has a big heart and artistic streak which saw her board a plane for the first time.
And it is a flight she will never forget after being recognised alongside 33 Australian primary students at Government House at Sydney for her submission to the national Interrelate ‘Say no to Bullying’ poster competition.
The anti-bullying competition has been running annually for five years and is designed to counter worrying statistics with respect to school bullying.
Interrelate figures show one in four Australians in years 4 to 9 are bullied every few weeks and are more likely to show symptoms of depression or anxiety disorders than other students.
Ms Jarmey visited Government House in Sydney on Friday, May 11 and had her photo taken with NSW governor David Hurley and the other finalists.
Her poster was chosen as one of 13 High Commended entries out of more than 45,000 entries nationwide.
A further 20 students were presented with regional finalist awards and one was declared overall winner of the competition.
Jessie’s mother, Sonya Jarmey said she could not be more proud of her daughter’s artistic skill and kind nature.
“She has no history with bullying herself but she has a very big heart and always tries to help anyone feeling down or upset,” she said.
“If she sees someone crying on the ground she will always help them.”
Jessie’s poster featured a clever play on words with a black bull pictured next to a goat with the words: “A Bully always needs a calming goat. Bullieve in yourself.”
Interrelate CEO Patricia Occelli said it was important for more people like Jessie to defend anyone experiencing bullying.
“We see far too often in the media the devastating news of young people who have felt that suicide was the only option they had left after relentless bullying,” she said.
“We know that there is power in numbers and really encourage young people who see bullying behaviours in their schools to step up and let the victims know that it is not the entire world against them.
“Let them know that they are worth standing up for and that you will stay with them until things change for the better.”