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Outreach   /  Katie Barry

The BULLY Project Australia

BULLY offers an intimate, unflinching look at how bullying has touched five kids and their families.


Impact areas





  • DIRECTOR Lee Hirsch

  • PRODUCER Katie Barry



BULLY is a beautifully cinematic, character driven documentary filmed over the course of the 2009/10 school year. BULLY opens a window onto the pained and often endangered lives of bullied kids, revealing a problem that transcends geographic, racial, ethnic and economic borders. BULLY examines the dire consequences of bullying through the testimony of courageous youth. It shows parents playing a vital role in supporting their kids, promoting UPSTANDER behaviour, and modelling empathy at home.

Support this project

86.39% funded
  • $100,000.00

  • $86,387.05

  • 16

Minimum amount is $ Maximum amount is $





Nichola Patterson $225.00
Anonymous $20.00
Junior School $415.80
Hui Ben Lim $5.00
Phil Rennie $50.00
Anonymous $50.00
Two Billboards $6.25
Ali Duguid $230.00
Redlands College $135.00
Sydney Community Foundation $5,000.00
The Caledonia Foundation $15,000.00
The Caledonia Foundation $15,000.00
The Caledonia Foundation $15,000.00
The Pierce Armstrong Foundation $10,000.00
Bennelong Foundation $25,000.00

Issue Summary

A short summary of the issue the documentary is addressing

One in four Year 4 to Year 9 Australian students report being bullied every few weeks or more often. In addition, reducing bullying in schools continues to be the leading social issue for students across all states and territories.


What is the impact vision statement of the documentary?

The BULLY Project will build empathy and the social and emotional skills of young people, families, teachers and school communities in an effort to reduce bullying in schools. We are aiming to work with 500 schools and communities across Australia to implement The BULLY Project to catalyse a tipping point in society where bullying is no longer accepted.


What outcomes does the project hope to achieve from making this documentary?

Short Term:
• Increase empathy - Improve student wellbeing, health and safety by changing a culture of bullying in schools, into one of empathy and action.
• Encourage people to be UPSTANDERS - Engage students, teachers and communities to get involved and take action to create safer and more inclusive schools and communities.
• Increase the skills and confidence of teachers and parents in preventing and managing bullying situations
• Increase students skills in working with technology and using film and digital art as a medium to express their views and drive change on the issue.

Long Term:
• Create safer, healthier and more inclusive communities
• Shift human behaviours and attitudes to become a more empathetic society


How will this documentary achieve its outcomes?

The BULLY Project Australia engages and educates teachers, parents and students. Bullying is a whole-community issue and must be addressed by everyone in the community. We do this through The BULLY Project Educator’s DVD & Toolkit which provides adults all the tools they need to drive change in their community. This is complemented by student and teacher workshops that are delivered in person, some of which are in partnership with Adobe Education Australia.

The BULLY Project Educator's DVD & Toolkit has been mapped to the Australian Curriculum, National Safe Schools Framework and AITSL Standards. It contains social and emotional learning tools and resources to help you prevent bullying and create a more caring, respectful community. We’ve also partnered with ACMI, PROJECT ROCKIT, FYA’s Propeller Project and Safe Schools Coalition Australia to present a blockbuster suite of initiatives for the whole school to get involved with and create a generation of UPSTANDERS!


How will partnerships with this project help inform the project development?

Major Partners: Shark Island Institute, The Caledonia Foundation, Documentary Australia Foundation, UnLtd, Bennelong Foundation, The Pierce Armstrong Foundation, State Government of Victoria Department of Education & Training, Sydney Community Foundation, ACMI, Ken Rigby, Monkey Baa Theatre Company, Project Rockit, FYA's Propeller Program, Sarah Jackson.
A special thanks to Good Pitch² Australia, Adobe & Tim Kitchen, Prof Kate Reynolds, Safe Schools Coalition Australia,, headspace, Kids Helpline, Lifeline, Suicide Call Back Service, R U OK?, MindMatters, Village Roadshow, Ogilvy One20, Luke Walker, Matt Esterman, Kate Beddoe, Mark Krebs, ACHPER NSW, Jane Worrell, Maia Dal Berger, Gab & Nat, Vikki Foord, Kate McArthur and Hume Central Secondary College, Wing Kuen Wee and Australian Christian College Southlands, The John Berne School, Sydney Secondary College, Dan Haesler, Sally Fryer, Louie, Tom Yasmin, Felix & Chris.

Audience Engagement and Social Impact

What actions does this project hope for its viewers after seeing this film?

• Seek help if you are being bullied, or more actively support young people who are being bullied.
• When you see a bullying situation, try to stop it and stand up for the person who is being bullied or go seek help.
• Take steps to ensure everyone at your school, workplace or community feels included, safe and supported.

Measurement and Evaluation

What is the projects indicators for success?

KPIs to measure effectiveness of The BULLY Project include:
• Number of The BULLY Project Educators Toolkits distributed to schools & communities in Australia
• Audience BULLY screening surveys to measure and increase in empathy and action to create safer schools and communities
• BULLY Project School/Community surveys to measure improved school climate (long term study) and participation in UPSTANDER activities
• Participation in and output of The BULLY Project Activities including The BULLY Project Mural.