17th January 2019
Darkan community supports Dolly’s Dream to break down bullying with dunk tank fun.
Darkan Sheepfest has earned the reputation of being a ‘good old fashioned, fun and safe country show for the whole family’. Sadly there are some families in Australia whose children don’t feel safe and aren’t having fun.
This time last year, Amy ‘Dolly’ Everett, a 14 year old country girl from the NT, took her own life. It is unimaginable to think of the grief parents feel when losing a child; but it is incomprehensible to learn that it was due to the bullying and cyber bullying by somebody else’s child. In Dolly’s own words it is now time to “Speak, Even if Your Voice Shakes.”
Local health professional and Darkan Sheepfest committee person Pam Stockley explains the decision to support Dolly’s Dream –
“Last year Darkan Sheepfest raised a considerable amount of money for Black Dog Ride but more importantly it created a high level of awareness for their organisation on the actual day and through the media. Given our focus this year was to engage youth more at our show, it made sense to have a charity that had a focus on youth mental health. It was unanimous that Dolly’s Dream was just the right one.”
Darkan Sheepfest will be held on Saturday 9th February 2019 commencing at 9.30am. There are two new headline events being held – the inaugural Farmer vs Footballer Farm Boot Foot Race and the Young Farmer Challenge. Last year’s popular events, the Sport Shear and Ewe Hogget Competitions, will be held again. But the “Dunk for Dolly” Dunk Tank will no doubt be a very special and memorable event.
Duncan South, Chief Fire Control Officer for the Shire of West Arthur, local farmer and father of three is more than happy to be ‘dunked’ for this important cause.
“Our children are very precious to us. We want them to feel confident about coming to us with their problems so that we can help to resolve them. We also hope that their friends will come to us if they notice that there is something wrong. Communication between family, friends and community will hopefully protect and help our children.”
Local Darkan teenager and boarding student Odette Telfer, 15, loves nothing more than spending time with her family and friends –
“I couldn’t imagine life without my beautiful friends and family, their love and support means a lot to me. Dolly is a heartbreaking reminder that we need to take care of each other and be compassionate. You never look good trying to make someone else look bad.”
Another way to combat bullying is through early education. Eloisa Goss, Darkan Primary School Principal and recent finalist in the WA Department of Education Awards, is a strong advocate for the safety and well-being of children.
“It is important that we all know what bullying is and that we all understand what constitutes bullying. The ‘National Definition of Bullying’ in Australian schools allow us to develop this common understanding. We use the Department of Education’s ‘Protective Behaviours’ program to help our children strengthen their ability to keep themselves safe and minimise risks. There are many personal safety issues that our children are exposed to and we are now more aware of the physical and emotional trauma of bullying and cyber bullying. It is important our children develop personal safety and resilience skills. You can start by simply talking at home with your children, helping them identify and understand their feelings.”
Darkan Sheepfest will once again provide free entertainment for children with only a gold coin entry fee. There will also be a Sundowner to bring Sheepfest to a close with a bar, aptly named the ‘Baa!’ and band until 10pm. High resolution images can be provided for publication.
For all media enquiries please contact Karlene Goss 0428361366 or firstname.lastname@example.org
Photo 1 Pam Stockley, committee member of Darkan Sheepfest, says the community will be proud to support Dolly’s Dream at this year’s event
Photo 2 Locals are keen to ‘dunk Dunc!’ – Shire of West Arthur Chief Control Fire Officer, Duncan South, for a good cause
Photo 3 Darkan Primary School Principal, Eloisa Goss, is passionate about making children feel safe
Photo 4 Local teenager, Odette Telfer and friends wanting all teenagers to ‘Speak Up’ about bullying
2019 Darkan Sheepfest Supreme Sponsors