Fifteen-year-old leads protest and march in Sparta

Marchers traveled through the streets of Sparta tonight in support of Black Lives Matter. A protest drew about a hundred people, all because of the work of a local teenager.

“I figured that it wouldn’t be a bad decision to at least get it spoken, especially in a small town like Sparta,” said Shanell Sprawls.

Fifteen-year-old Sprawls from Sparta used the power of social media to gather a group of around 100 people to their local park.

“I’m ecstatic that I’m able to get my voice heard,” said Sprawls.

The march weaved the city and ended at the Monroe County Justice Center. But the journey to get this started wasn’t easy.

“I got some really great responses but then I had people telling me that a fifteen-year-old shouldn’t be on social media and shouldn’t be involved in adult stuff because they’re still a child,” said Lisa Fisher.

Her mom, Lisa Fisher, posted to a Sparta Facebook page seeing if there was interest in the community for a protest. The post lit up with responses, and Sprawls took control, and scheduled the event.

“It was difficult at first,”said Sprawls.

Even Sparta’s Police Chief Emilee Nottestad joined in, and kept protesters safe walking around town.

Sprawl’s family and friends were amazed by the turnout.

“I know me as a person, I couldn’t do it myself, I don’t have the guts. But she does and I couldn’t be more proud of her,” said Fisher.

Fisher said she thinks the work her daughter is doing is important to educate the community, and the younger generation has the power to create the needed change.