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Donna is passionate, and she inspired me,” he said. We were still silenced by embarrassment and shame and the stigma that comes with it,” she said.

Unfortunately, teen dating violence—the type of intimate partner violence that occurs between two young people who are, or who were once in, an intimate relationship—is a serious problem in the United States.

A national survey found that ten percent of teens, female and male, had been the victims of physical dating violence within the past year and can increase the risk of physical injury, poor academic performance, binge drinking, suicide attempts, unhealthy sexual behaviors, substance abuse, negative body image and self-esteem, and violence in future relationships.

Today, York, 21, chairs the National Youth Advisory Board at loveisrespect, a nonprofit group that aims to empower youth to end dating abuse.

The group runs a hotline that teens and young adults can call, text or chat with online for advice about their lives.