By Jeremy Sollars
The Scots PGC College in Warwick will hold a commemorative service soon after school resumes for Term One in 2018 to honour the life of Dolly Everett, the young boarder who died by suicide last week in the Northern Territory.
According to statements made by her family the 14 year old took her own life in response to online bullying, and her death has devastated both the college community and the Northern Territory community where her family is based.
Known universally as Dolly, Amy Jayne Everett was once the ‘face’ of Akubra.
Facebook posts by her family indicate the bullying took place on social media and do not suggest it was related to other students at The Scots PGC College.
Scots principal Kyle Thompson said in a statement this week the school is “deeply saddened by the recent loss to our school community”.
“Dolly will be truly missed and our thoughts and support remain with her family and friends,” Mr Thompson said.
“We are continuing to work directly with Dolly’s family to provide support, whilst also respecting their privacy during this extremely difficult time.
“In consultation with Dolly’s family, we intend to hold a special commemorative service early in Term One to provide our community with an opportunity to support the Everett family and in honour of Dolly’s life.
“We understand loss can have a profound emotional effect on us all and may elicit a range of emotions, questions or concerns among students in particular.
“For this reason, the welfare and privacy of our entire community remains our priority during this difficult time.
“The College has a number of support services in place, including a team of dedicated counsellors, for any community member who may wish to discuss or seek support.
“As the school term commences, support services will continue to be available to all, with a focus on our students in particular and the importance of seeking help should they feel concerned or overwhelmed during what is a sensitive and emotional time.
“We take our responsibility for the wellbeing of students extremely seriously and have policies and pastoral care structures in place to address any concerns and to support the social and emotional development of our students.”
A memorial service for Dolly will be held tomorrow, Friday 12 January, in the Northern Territory town of Katherine.
Below is the wording of a Facebook post by Dolly’s father, Tick Everett …
“Well where do I start,
I would like to thank everybody for their kind and supportive words over the last few days it is truly amazing. I also apologize that there are so many kind words that I have not yet replied to, so instead of wearing out another screen or keyboard I would like to offer my thanks in one big message.
This week has been an example of how social media should be used, it has also been an example of how it shouldn’t be.
If we can help other precious lives from being lost and the suffering of so many, then Doll’s life will not be wasted. I know for some suicide is considered cowardly but I guarantee those people wouldn’t have half the strength that my precious little angel had, Doll had the strength to do what she thought she had to do to escape the evil in this world. However unfortunately Dolly will never know the great pain and emptiness left behind.
In saying this I have a couple of challenges,
Firstly if by some chance the people who thought this was a joke and made themselves feel superior by the constant bullying and harassment see this post, please come to our service and witness the complete devastation you have created.
The second is for the strong ones, let’s stop the bullies no matter where, but especially in our kids. As the old saying goes, you will never know what you have until it’s gone.”
NATIONAL 24/7 CRISIS SERVICES …
Lifeline: 13 11 14
Suicide Call Back Service: 1300 659 467
MensLine Australia: 1300 78 99 78
beyondblue: 1300 22 46 36
Kids Helpline: 1800 55 1800