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TPD'S R.I.C.H. House transforms at-risk student into mentor success

R.I.C.H House serves at-risk kids in Robles Park
Posted at 5:57 PM, Nov 22, 2016

"I was looking at Florida State, FAMU,” said 15-year-old Franchelle Lundy.

Franchelle Lundy is a freshman at Leto High School taking all Advanced Placement and Honors classes.

She’s also a volunteer tutor at Rich House in Robles Park.

"They look up to me as a role model because I will never give up. I will sit down here and do their homework with them,” said Lundy.

Lundy donates her time because she used to sit here.

She grew up in nearby Belmont Heights-- one of the at-risk neighborhoods Rich House serves.

She says she was bullied and surrounded by gangs and wanted something better. 

"You feel stressful. You don't know what to do, think you're not supposed to be in the world. You don't think you're meant for it and I understand how some kids feel. Some kids don't have food to eat,” she said.

It's students like Lundy Rich House touts as its successes, thanks to Tampa Police Officers who spend their time here mentoring and teaching.

"I want them to learn that you have to work for everything that you get and so now they're realizing that, they bring their report cards in. They come in and do their homework. They know that if they don't put out what I expect, they're not going to get anything in return,” said Tampa Police Officer Susan Bowers.

Officer  Bowers will tell you this not a daycare.

She's tough, has high expectations and her kids know it.

"If you put out goodness, goodness will come and that's what I think we have to do with our kids today,” she explained.

They've already had two kids go to college.

Lundy is confident she's on the same path but not without giving back first.  

"Hopefully, it will give someone else a blessing, a miracle one day just like it did mine,” said Officer Lundy.