Tracey Ly's powerful film in the running for festival award

A screen shot from Tracey Ly's film 'I'm human, just like you'.
A screen shot from Tracey Ly's film 'I'm human, just like you'.

Have you ever stopped to think about how all the words, the names you call me and your actions make me feel?

It's part of Tracey Ly's powerful monologue in her short film I'm human, just like you which is a finalist in the Film by Online Film Festivals.

The Bossley Park High School student said she wanted to create a film about bullying everyone could relate too.

The 17-year-old, who has Morquio syndrome, has been a victim of bullying. Her condition affects her bones and muscles forcing her to stop growing at the age of six. Her walking is limited and she uses a walking frame and wheelchair to get around.

In the film, it shows Tracey being bullied by three girls and reveals some of the names she has been called when they are written on her face and arms.

"The words written are real words people have said to me," she said.

"I've also said them to myself. I think with bullying, yes it can affect you, but what it can really affect is how you think of yourself.

Tracey Ly getting bullied in the film.

Tracey Ly getting bullied in the film.

"Every day I'm forced to hold back a tsunami of tears from insecurities that people have given to me."

The film took a month to complete and was filmed near her Green Valley home with the help of family friends and her sisters. It's the first film the year-12 graduate has made. She is hoping to continue to learn about filmmaking and develop her passion for music after school.

She said an email she received from the mum of a boy who has a disability who saw the film and helped him is why she made the film.

"That's something I wanted the film to do: I wanted the film to help people," she said.

"I want people to know, that just because people have a disability it doesn't mean we're less of a human being."

It forms the basis of her closing remarks in the film: a message to the bullies.

"Don't you realise I'm just like you? I'm not just someone in a chair, I'm not just someone who needs help from time-to-time, I'm not just some who you can push around... I am human, just like you," she said.

People can now vote for Tracey's film for the People's Choice Award. Voting closes at 9am on November 23.

The Film by Online Festivals 2020 were live streamed on Tuesday with 31 films across two age ranges selected from around 200.

Department of Education Secretary Mark Scott, who opened the virtual festival, said: "The Film by initiative is important because film gave everyone the opportunity to tell their story, to have a voice and to be heard."