“I've tried searching for the right things to say about Ben’s death,” says Sophie, “but it seems to me there is nothing to be said other than it never should have happened. Ben was only 13 years old when his life was cut short as a result of online bullying.
“Statistics show that, in the UK, four children a week will take their own life. Sadly, with NHS mental health services depleting faster than ever, this number isn’t set to change any time soon.
“The bigger issue in all of this is, however, the cause of Ben’s death. Before Facebook, Snapchat, Instagram and Twitter, bullying was physical and in the moment. You went home from school, closed the door and you were safe until the next day. Now, through the Internet and social media, there is no escape from bullying. It is constant. Anyone can contact you, from anywhere and at any time, even someone you don’t know.
“Me and a few others decided to set up a JustGiving page and raise some money in Ben’s memory. All the money raised is going to a fantastic charity called Beautiful Inside & Out (SCIO).
“We know that in no way can this make up for Ben’s tragic passing, but we hope that it will become a way for anyone effected by Ben’s death to show their love and respect to the McKenzie family. Thank you to everyone that got involved and helped with the fundraiser,” Sophie concludes.
RSK’s Glasgow office raised £55 for Beautiful Inside & Out by holding a Halloween bake sale. Ben’s story and the funds raised for Beautiful Inside & Out, currently totalling nearly £10,000, were also mentioned during Prime Minister’s Question Time on 12 December. You can see a video of it here.
Sophie and the rest of the Glasgow office are planning to raise more money for the charity and Ben’s family in 2019.
If you would like to donate, you can do so by visiting Sophie’s JustGiving page.