A young woman from Swindon who was bullied online by her own friends is determined to show how cyber bullying can ruin lives and even lead to suicide. Her story has been featured on ITV’s West Country Tonight.
Sophie Thorne (17), from Swindon, began experiencing cyber-bullying last year over the internet and via text messaging.
The bullying - which started at school - continued to follow Sophie through to her college in Swindon. The regular abuse lowered Sophie's self-esteem so much that she self-harmed.
Thanks to support from her family and the school and college, action is now being taken against the bullies. However, Sophie wants to continue to raise awareness of this 'faceless' type of crime.
In order to raise awareness of the issue, Sophie is making an animated film to be screened across Swindon in order to make people aware of cyber-bullying and ensure them there is no reason to feel ashamed about being bullied.
Also involved in the project is fellow cyber-bullying victim and Swindon Youth MP Carney Bonner (18) who was on set to share his experiences of cyber-bullying with Sophie, and to support her campaign.
Scroll down for some of the shots from the shoot. Thanks to Madeleine Booth-Howe for the photographs
One of the first shots sees Sophie reading the offensive messages in her bedroom
Close up shot of Sophie typing
The action moves outside for some distance shots of Sophie
Sophie checking her phone once more, still being pursued by the bullies
The action continues outside with this close-up of Sophie reading abusive messages
One scene in the film sees Sophie talking to fellow cyber-bullying victim, Carney Bonner (18)
With the shoot over, there's enough time for Carney and Sophie to share a picture
For further information, help, and advice on cyber-bullying, click the following links:
Kidscape - Offers advice and support for bullied children and their parents
Stop Cyber-Bullying - Information for sufferers of cyber-bullying, and information for those who may be caring for people who are suffering from it
Childline - Free, confidential advice for cyber-bullying sufferers