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Cool Kid raises awareness of domestic violence issues

April 25, 2013 12:00:00 AM PDT
This week's Cool Kid is tackling a tough subject with her peers, but it's an important one she wants to make sure they learn before it's too late.

At Mission Viejo High School, Shannon McNicholas started the Not Just Another Bad Day Club. It's a club that deals with domestic violence. The name comes from the words of domestic violence survivors.

"A lot of times they'll say, 'Oh, they were just having a bad day,'" said Shannon. "'They said those words to me because they were having a bad day. They slapped me because they were having a bad day.' But they weren't just having a bad day. They were being abusive and people need to know that."

Some think this is a subject that should only be tackled by adults. But Shannon knows her peers need this information now.

"It's not just adults at all. Actually, I was talking about in my club meeting today: One in four high-schoolers has or will be in an abusive relationship," said Shannon.

Shannon's future plans include becoming a teacher, but she hopes to give her students more than just numbers and their ABCs.

"You can really affect somebody early in life by telling them little things like telling them to avoid being jealous of other people. Telling them to share. Helping them learn all of these life skills," said Shannon.

Shannon knows the work of helping kids in situations involving domestic violence will continue beyond her years at Mission Viejo High.

"It's important because everyone needs to learn about it," said Shannon. "Not just people from my generation, people down the road. It's a continuing issue."

The pain of domestic violence is very real. Shannon McNicholas hopes she can, in some way, help those who are impacted by it.

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