Sunday was a big night for Joelle Amery and her parents as she won the best music video award at the La Femme International Film Festival - going from bullied teen to best in class.
"I lost all my hair when I was 8, and I experienced bullying for five years, and it was really, really terrible. I got bullied by children younger than me," said Amery.
The 14-year-old has alopecia and used to be bullied routinely at her London school. Kids called her cancer girl. Even adults on the street took aim.
"I used to come home crying all the time. I used to come home to my mom crying," said Amery.
But that all changed with a video called "Big in L.A.," which was posted on YouTube.
Her family decided to make the music video with their little camera while on vacation in sunny Southern California to cheer up the young singer and bring her out of her shell; it ended up changing her life.
"Before the video was released, she was very, very shy. She was very timid," said Norman Cambridge, her stepfather. "The day she came home from school when the video was finally released, it was like a different girl."
"Literally overnight the bullying just stopped completely," said Amery.
She and her family are now speaking out against bullying in hopes of helping other kids who fall victim.
"I think the most important thing is to encourage children to talk about things that are going on in school and outside of school," said Michelle Grayson, Amery's mother.
"If they're being bullied for trying to be who they are, they just have to stay who they are," said Amery. "Bullying cannot change people."
Amery says she is now going to focus all her energy on her singing career.