Abertillery boy who lost a finger ‘fleeing bullies’ moves to England
A boy who lost a finger as he reportedly ran away from bullies has moved away from the area where the incident happened, his mother has said.
Raheem Bailey was allegedly attacked by a group of children at his school in Abertillery, and was beaten then kicked after being pushed to the ground.
Raheem’s mother Shantal said he made a desperate attempt to leave the school grounds but got his right-hand ring finger caught while climbing a fence, causing a severe injury.
He underwent six hours of surgery to save his finger but it was unsuccessful.
Confirming the family have moved to England, Shantal Bailey told the Times, her son was relieved to be moving away from the area and had faced “racial and physical abuse” since he started secondary school at Abertillery Learning Community in September 2021.
In an interview with the BBC, she added: “It seems like he has constantly been bullied… He has always been at least name-called and mocked for his height.”
“Each day he had to build himself up to go in because he knew he was going to get picked on… That’s painful, that a child has to almost prepare themselves before going into a place that’s meant to be safe and tranquil.”
Following the incident last month, Blaenau Gwent Council said: “Abertillery Learning Community is working with Gwent Police in relation to an ongoing investigation into an alleged assault on the secondary campus.”
The council added: “The safety and well-being of all learners and staff remains paramount. We have continued to closely monitor and review the situation.”
Boxer Anthony Joshua and footballer Jadon Sancho were among those who sent messages of support to Raheem following the incident
Football manager Chris Hughton, pundit Gary Neville and Olympic BMX biker Kye Whyte also contacted Raheem to wish him well, and US basketball player Gerald Green, who forged a hugely successful career with nine fingers, set up a call to speak to Raheem directly.
Shantal’s fundraising campaign following the amputation of Raheem’s finger raised over £107,000 in donations towards treatment, and she is now hoping he can have a prosthetic finger fitted.
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