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Cool Kid hopes to share message w/ the world

August 12, 2010 12:00:00 AM PDT
Cool Kid Joe Manny Hernandez finds his happiness in the joy he brings others. As co-founder of Project ETHA - Engaging Teens in Humanitarian Action - he's hoping to share his message and his cause with the world."It's basically a bunch of kids in here learning how to be international leaders, and going out to their school and community and teaching what they learn here in this community," said Hernandez.

A senior at Vaughn International Studies Academy, Hernandez is rewarded for his work in a way not measured by dollars and cents.

"I have a catch phrase I tell myself every day, it's 'if I see someone else happy, that's my happy,' said Hernandez. "That's my paycheck. I don't need to get paid for this. That's my biggest paycheck, seeing a movement."

He had a rough beginning to high school. But when his English teacher screened a film on modern day child labor, Hernandez found a purpose, and has a quality to make it work.

"Charisma... What was an ability to make people laugh, now is an ability to make people listen," said teacher Nicole Mohr.

His work has started in his classroom, but his goals are global.

"Like those kind of people that work for the U.N. or works here in the U.S. trying to talk to people from other countries about human rights violations, that's my passion, that's my drive to be an international politician," said Hernandez.

Seeing the need for justice all over the world and rallying a new generation to take up the cause makes Joe Manny Hernandez our Cool Kid.


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