LMPD officer helps young girls beat the odds, just like she did - WDRB 41 Louisville News

LMPD officer helps young girls beat the odds, just like she did

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LOUISVILLE, Ky. (WDRB) -- A LMPD officer beat the odds, and she's working to help dozens of young girls do the same.

When she's not on the beat, Officer Amber Ross with LMPD's Community Policing Unit spends time in classrooms across Jefferson County.

"This is very important," Ross said. "Each girl has a special story to be told and to be heard."

The officer spent Wednesday afternoon at Frost Sixth Grade Academy. But the visit did not include an interrogation, and no one was in trouble with the law.

"These girls are special girls," Ross said.

In fact, Ross was there to make sure there's not trouble in the future.

"Remember what I told you all, present yourself as what?" she asked. "A lady," students responded.

Ross created No Girl Lost in 2016, a mentor program for young girls. The goal is to target young girls who may be struggling or have personal issues.

"Nobody can take away your bravery but who? You," she told students Wednesday.

Ross feels uniquely qualified to help. She doesn't look like what she has been through, but Ross overcame a lot of adversity earlier in life.

"I did not have a father growing up. My father ended up doing 13 years in the penitentiary," she said. "Then I ended up being a single mother myself."

At age 19, there was a long road ahead.

"So, therefore, here I am -- a statistic."

But instead of becoming a statistic, Ross graduated from college and eventually the police academy.

"I relate to them," she said. "They relate to me."

"I was like, my dad is a lot similar to yours," said Alasia Mobley, who is a Frost Student.

The students see the uniform, but it's clearly her struggle that helps Ross connect with the girls.

"I think my momma is in jail," Catrina Cooper said. "I don't know where my daddy is."

"So when I tell them my story, they're like, wow, she can relate to us," Ross said.

Ross said she started the mentoring program several years ago because there was not a lot of attention for girls in the community.

She said most classes start the same: Find the issue and then gradually build self-esteem from there.

Just like she was able to do years ago.

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