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Annual Blue Water Bash July 22, 2023! Blue Water Bash July 22, 2023!<p>​​<span style="background-color:transparent;">​​​​​The "Blue Water Bash", Camp Okoboji's 70</span><sup style="background-color:transparent;">th</sup><span style="background-color:transparent;"> Anniversary is on Saturday, July 22! Join us under the big tent for a fun-filled summer party benefiting Boys Town's Okoboji Camp. With your help, our youth and families can continue to have the opportunity to experience a safe and memorable family vacation. Mark your calendars and </span><span style="background-color:transparent;"> </span><a href="" target="_blank" style="background-color:transparent;"> <strong>g</strong><strong>et your tickets today</strong>!</a></p><p>Enjoy heavy hors d'oeuvres and an open bar as you browse the dozens of silent auction items up for bid and then get ready to raise your paddle for the exciting items in our live auction. Be sure to register your phone for early access and mobile bidding! To register, text boji23 to 76278.</p><p>We'll also have live music throughout the evening from Pet Rock and after the live auction, the dance floor will be open! This is definitely a party at the lake you don't want to miss!</p><p>Sponsorships are greatly needed for this event. Give Boys Town kids a summer vacation they'll never forget!  <strong><a href="" target="_blank">Register online​</a></strong> or contact Melissa Steffes for more information at <a href=""></a>.<br></p><p>Thank you to our 2023 Blue Water Bash Chairs Cynthia Lakin & Sabrina Lakin!​<br><br></p><p style="text-align:center;"> <a class="btn btn-action" href="" target="_blank">Register today!</a><br><br></p><p></p><p> <b>Date<br></b><span style="background-color:transparent;">Ju</span><span style="background-color:transparent;">ly 22, 2023</span></p><p> <span style="background-color:transparent;"> <b>Time<br></b></span><span style="background-color:transparent;">6:00 p.m.</span></p><p> <span style="background-color:transparent;"> <b>Location<br></b></span><span style="background-color:transparent;">Boys Town Okoboji Camp<br></span><span style="background-color:transparent;">1501 Okoboji Boulevard<br></span><span style="background-color:transparent;">West Okoboji, Iowa </span><span style="background-color:transparent;">​</span></p>​<br>2023-07-22T05:00:00ZEvent<img alt="" src="/locations/nebraska/news-and-events/PublishingImages/Blue-Water-Bash-Save-the-Dater-900x471.jpg" width="905" style="BORDER:0px solid;" />text/html; charset=utf-8 NewsEvent



Boys Town Elects the 123rd Mayor Town Elects the 123rd Mayor<p>​<span style="background-color:transparent;">BOYS TOWN, Neb. – Boys Town youth today elected Jafar Liebers of Lincoln, Nebraska, the 123rd Mayor of the Village of Boys Town. Abby Masonbrink was elected Vice-Mayor.  </span><span style="background-color:transparent;">​</span></p><p>Jafar Liebers is 16-years-old, and his campaign theme was: Jafar: True to Boys Town, True to You. “I want to show campus that I love Boys Town and the youth," said Liebers. “I love helping and advocating for people, I want to be a voice for campus". One goal of his as mayor is getting more attendance to the girls sporting events at Boys Town.<br></p><p>Jafar is involved in Student Council, Peer Ministry, and is the Battalion Command of the JROTC and Chief of Cadets for the Village of Boys Town Police Department. His goal is to attend Creighton University to study Business and Photography.  His Family-Teachers are Jeff and Hilary Jackson.<br></p><p>Abby Masonbrink plays for Boys Town's volleyball, softball, and swimming teams. She is also on the National Honors Society and has a role as a Peer Minister. After graduation, Abby wants to become an ultrasound tech, move to Denver, Colorado and start a family. Abby's Family-Teachers are Beki and Louie Reyes.​<br></p><p>Father Edward J. Flanagan conceived the self-government system at the Village of Boys Town in 1926 as a tool for its citizens to build character, citizenship and a sense of community. The process was made famous in the 1938 Academy Award-winning movie “Boys Town," where Mickey Rooney's portrayal of Whitey Marsh, a tough young boy who turns his life around and becomes Mayor of Boys Town.​<br></p>2023-05-11T05:00:00ZNews<img alt="Mayor 2023" src="/locations/north-florida/PublishingImages/Mayoral-2023-Photo.jpg" style="BORDER:0px solid;" />text/html; charset=utf-8 NewsEvent
You made great things happen in 2022! made great things happen in 2022!<p><b>​​​Thanks to our donors and friends, Boys Town was able to make a positive impact in the lives of children and families who sought help from us in 2022.</b></p><p><img src="/locations/nebraska/PublishingImages/NE-2022-Impact.jpg" alt="Impact" style="margin:5px;" /><br></p>2023-03-01T06:00:00ZNews<img alt="impact" src="/locations/nebraska/PublishingImages/NE-2022-Impact-Rollup.jpg" style="BORDER:0px solid;" />text/html; charset=utf-8 NewsEvent
PetSmart Continues Tradition of Donating Stuffed Animals to Community Youth at Christmas Continues Tradition of Donating Stuffed Animals to Community Youth at Christmas <p>​​​​​​​​PetSmart continued its yearly holiday tradition in 2022, helping brighten the season for the girls and boys of Boys Town and other organizations. For the fifth year, PetSmart donated stuffed animals as Christmas gifts. </p><p>Over the years, PetSmart’s Omaha area stores have joined together to bring smiles to the faces of children served by Boys Town program with its annual stuffed animal donation.</p><p>The stuffed animals were handed out to hospital patients, families participating in LIFT Together in North and South Omaha, students at All Saints, Sacred Heart and Holy Name CUES school, and Boys Town youth at the annual Light the Town Christmas celebration.</p><p>“The pure joy these children show when receiving the unexpected gift of a stuffed animal is so overwhelming, especially among our older students," said Angie Whitfield, All Saints Principal. “One must understand that if our families can provide Christmas gifts, for many, these gifts are necessities."</p><p>PetSmart is committed to giving to worthy charities like Boys Town and others in our community.​​<br></p><p></p><div class="ms-rtestate-read ms-rte-wpbox"><div class="ms-rtestate-notify ms-rtestate-read cb1c0289-8540-4d20-97ef-ee7e9da07f35" id="div_cb1c0289-8540-4d20-97ef-ee7e9da07f35" unselectable="on"></div><div id="vid_cb1c0289-8540-4d20-97ef-ee7e9da07f35" unselectable="on" style="display:none;"></div> </div>2023-02-23T06:00:00ZNews<img alt="" src="/locations/nebraska/news-and-events/PublishingImages/petsmart-toy-4.jpg" style="BORDER:0px solid;" /> <img alt="" src="/locations/nebraska/news-and-events/PublishingImages/petsmart-toy-3.jpg" style="BORDER:0px solid;" />text/html; charset=utf-8 NewsEvent
Hands to Sew and a Heart to Serve to Sew and a Heart to Serve<p><span style="background-color:transparent;">​​​​​</span><span style="background-color:transparent;">Twelve-year old, Eliza Jones, is a budding entrepreneur. After her Grandma taught her how to sew, she started her own little company, sewing and selling inspirational pillows that each include a message of encouragement. Business has been good and that's when Eliza decided she wanted to do more. Today, for every pillow she sells, she donates a pillow to Boys Town's Foster Family Services to be shared in care bags that are given to each young person entering foster care. To date, she has donated 50 pillows.</span></p><p>According to Matt Priest, Director of Boys Town's Foster Family Services, Eliza chose to work with Boys Town as her parents are currently in training to become Boys Town Foster Parents. “Eliza is such an amazing and thoughtful person," said Priest. “We include her inspirational pillows in our comfort backpacks, along with things like stuffed animals, personal hygiene products and journals. The uplifting messages that Eliza includes on each pillow provide comfort and encouragement for our kids at a time when they need it most."</p><p>On behalf of the entire Boys Town family, we thank Eliza for inspiring all of us with her kindness and caring support. ​​​​<br></p>2023-02-03T06:00:00ZNewstext/html; charset=utf-8 NewsEvent
Omaha Everyday: Boys Town Everyday: Boys Town<p>Dave Webber from Omaha Everyday talks to former Boys Town Graduate and now Family teacher, Jeff Sweezy, and recent Boys Town Graduate and now college football player, Tyler Weeda-Carlson! The holidays at Boys Town provide an opportunity to do many things for the kids on campus. Learn more about their story on <a href="" target="_blank">WOWT</a>.</p><p><a href="" target="_blank"><img src="/locations/nebraska/news-and-events/PublishingImages/Omaha-Everyday.jpg" alt="Omaha Every Day " style="margin:5px;" /></a><br></p>2023-01-11T06:00:00ZNewstext/html; charset=utf-8 NewsEvent
Omaha behavioral health specialist shares advice on dealing with holiday stress behavioral health specialist shares advice on dealing with holiday stress<p><em>​​</em><span style="background-color:transparent;">Th</span><span style="background-color:transparent;">is article was posted on </span><a href="" target="_blank" style="background-color:transparent;">10/11 NOW KOLN/KGIN</a><span style="background-color:transparent;"> <br><br></span></p><p>OMAHA, Neb. (WOWT) - From decorating to family gatherings, the holidays can be a joyful time for many, but they can also be filled with stress, sadness, or even loneliness for others.<br></p><p>Dr. Natalie Jensen at the <a href="">Boys Town Center for Behavioral Health</a> sees more of her patients making appointments this time of year.</p><p>“I think if they've already identified a tendency towards depressive symptoms, then those can get magnified," Jensen said. “Honestly I think one of the biggest things I see is people putting a lot of pressure on themselves to feel a certain type of way, and then if they don't feel that way there's a lot of self-judgment."</p><p>Many can feel overwhelmed by the stress of buying gifts if their budgets are tight, or from hosting a family gathering.</p><p>“I think there can be decreased energy, more overwhelmed, lower tolerance for just the daily hassles, everything just feels harder, maybe a tendency towards pulling away from others, feeling kind of alone or self-isolating."</p><p>Dr. Jensen says it's alright to acknowledge those feelings.</p><p>“And then I think it can be helpful to respond rather than just react. So thinking about, what am I feeling, and maybe what's a step I can take that would be helpful in nurturing this feeling or just addressing it. Sometimes if we don't respond to our feelings and we just react that's when we maybe act in unhealthy ways. We lash out at a partner, we end up crying in the bathroom, which all of that's ok. But I think trying to be more attuned and responsive can go a long way,"</p><p>If you've lost a loved one, this time can be especially hard.</p><p>“Do what you can to support yourself, whether that is keeping a tradition that you maybe had with a loved one. For others it might be helpful to do something different, create a new tradition."</p><p>Dr. Jensen also recommends finding a support group to help.</p><p>Take time for yourself and focus on what you <em>can</em> control.</p><p>“If we've experienced loss or if we're experiencing financial strain, a lot of that is outside of our control. If you can find your locus of control and focus on what you can take control of, that can be helpful. So maybe if it's spending time with your family, if that's a priority to you, and then that means you say no to other invitations so you can really focus on that quality family time. Maybe it's 'I can't buy a very expensive gift', but I can buy something that's heartfelt and give it to a person I care about,"</p><p>f you're struggling with holiday blues, and those feelings stick around even into the new year, you can reach out to the Boys Town hotline. The specialists are available 24/7 via phone or text.</p><p>“I like the idea of radical acceptance and it's this idea of accepting the things that we can't change. It doesn't mean that we're happy with them or are ok with it but there's something about just accepting it and really making space for it, that I think is important," says Jensen.<br></p><p>Boys Town also offers the <a href="" target="_blank">Holiday Helps ebook</a>.<br></p>2022-12-20T06:00:00ZNews<img alt="Christmas Tree" src="/PublishingImages/Christmas-tree.jpeg" style="BORDER:0px solid;" />text/html; charset=utf-8 NewsEvent
North Omaha Impact Award Ceremony Omaha Impact Award Ceremony<p></p><p>Boys Town programs and staff were recently honored with various awards after making a significant impact in the Omaha community.<br></p><p>First, the Spirit Award was presented to Boys Town from the North Omaha Community Care Council (NOCCC). This award was given to recognize those who have demonstrated exceptional public service and dedication to the health and wellness of the North Omaha Community. Boys Town was praised for its increasing partnerships and services that are focused on meeting unmet needs for the community. Staff members from both our youth care and health care teams attended the event to show the joint dedication to the community Boys Town has.<br></p><p> “Boys Town would like to thank North Omaha Community Care Council for this award," said Bridget Barnes, Director of Boys Town's Common Sense Parenting® Nebraska, who accepted the award on behalf of Boys Town. “We are happy that our services and diverse resources have played a role in improving the quality of health and education in the North Omaha community. We believe that 'We make a living by what we get, but we make a life by what we give.' Thank you for this wonderful honor to Father Flanagan's Boys Town." <br></p><p>Meanwhile, the awards recognizing the expertise of Boys Town staff kept pouring in!<br></p><p>At the Nebraska Association of Home and Services for Children (NeAHSC) annual conference, two Boys Town staff members were recognized.<br></p><ul><li> <strong>Supervisor/Administrator of the Year award:</strong></li><ul><li>Senior Director Lisa Pierce was honored for her outstanding work in the community with stake holders and advocacy for youth. Lisa oversees Boys Town Programs such as Foster Care, In-Home Family Services, Community Support Services-LIFT Together, Common Sense Parenting®, and Multisystemic Therapy. Lisa not only oversees these programs, but also volunteers her time on boards, in meetings, and is having conversations wherever advocacy is being discussed that could impact Nebraska's youth. Lisa has worked in this field for more than 20 years and is willing to have difficult conversations to ensure children's voices in Nebraska are being heard. </li></ul><li> <strong>Childcare Worker of the Year:</strong></li><ul><li>Bradley Vipond has been a Boys Town employee for more than 15 years and is currently a therapist with Boys Town's Multisy​stemic Therapy program. Brad has been a leader in advocacy for youth and has an engaging way of quickly diffusing situations and identifying underlying issues. Brad was recently tasked with assisting in the Fremont area, which had been previously underserved. He not only achieved that but had such outstanding outcomes that he now has a wait list! </li></ul></ul><p>Finally, please help us in congratulating Angela Wyatt, a lead multi-systematic therapist, on her "Whatever It Takes" award! This award, given by MST Institute, recognizes Angela's leadership in supporting MST teams. She took on many additional tasks, covered supervisions and more, while transitioning to the role of Lead Therapist -- all while carrying her own caseload. <br></p><p>These are just a few of the highlights of the amazing work and dedication of Boys Town Nebraska employees to better their communities and better themselves to further our mission to change the way America cares for children and families.<br></p><p>Congratulations to all! </p><div class="ms-rtestate-read ms-rte-wpbox" unselectable="on"><div class="ms-rtestate-notify ms-rtestate-read 7ab2c1dc-9fe1-449f-9576-216f237eca67" id="div_7ab2c1dc-9fe1-449f-9576-216f237eca67" unselectable="on"></div><div id="vid_7ab2c1dc-9fe1-449f-9576-216f237eca67" unselectable="on" style="display:none;"></div></div><p> <br> </p><p>​​<br><br></p>2022-12-02T06:00:00ZNews<img alt="Boys Town Nebraska North Omaha Impact Award Winners!" src="/locations/nebraska/news-and-events/PublishingImages/NOCCCawardwinners.jpg" style="BORDER:0px solid;" />text/html; charset=utf-8 NewsEvent