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Help Send South Florida Kids Back to School Send South Florida Kids Back to School<p>​<span style="background-color:transparent;">Dear Friends of Boys Town South Florida,</span><br></p><p> <strong>Did you know that suicide is the second leading cause of death between the ages of 10 and 34?</strong></p><p>That is an alarming fact and more than ever, it is vital to be mindful of the mental health of our children and the family stressors that may be affecting our children's lives. That is why caring for mental health is a top concern.​<br></p><p></p><blockquote><p style="text-align:left;"> <em>John was referred to Boys Town South Florida’s Care Coordination Services after making suicidal and homicidal statements via text during an incident that occurred at the beginning of the school year. Mom had shared a great deal of concerns for her son’s safety, and the choices he had made. As a result, John was Baker Acted and admitted to JFK Hospital. John was diagnosed with adjustment disorder and discharged three days later. Mom also mentioned to our Family Consultant that she was concerned with John’s academic performance as he was behind in several classes. She said that John seemed to not be able to focus in class and she had to constantly remind him when he had an assignment due or a test coming up. Mom also let us know that John lost his dad in July 2021 to cancer. John was linked to counseling services and community resources, including a mentoring program. The young man was also referred to a psychiatric evaluation and started to take medication, which greatly helped him to focus better and improved his academic performance. The Family Consultant shared that John has come a long way. He has a mentor who he can relate to, and both have a common interest. His mentor plays golf and John is a very good golf player. John has reported that he feels comfortable speaking with his mentor and is able to talk to him about anything, especially about losing his dad. When it comes to John’s academics, the Family Consultant encouraged his mom to complete the 504 Plan process, so that John could be evaluated. He finished the last school year with A’s and B’s, which was a huge accomplishment, according to his mom. This young man always says that if it were not for his mother, he would not have the grades that he does. John also learned to be a good advocate for himself and he lets his teachers know when he needs help with his schoolwork.</em></p></blockquote><p></p><p>“I continue to work with John in meeting his goals. I look forward to seeing him reach for the stars and succeeding!", said his mom. (John is a pseudo name)</p><p style="text-align:justify;">With the beginning of a new school year just around the corner, every child and family will face different challenges. Boys Town South Florida is here to help families with children who are struggling to overcome their problems to access services designed to help them get on a more positive life path.</p><p>I hope that you can join Boys Town South Florida today by donating to ensure that at-risk students get the help they need. Together, we can provide preventative support to improve children's behavior and to help stabilize families. <a href="" target="_blank">Any amount you can give</a> is greatly appreciated and will make a tremendous difference in the life of a child in need.</p><p style="text-align:justify;">Thank you for standing with vulnerable children!<br><em> </em><br>Blessings,</p><p>Bethany Lacey, Executive Director</p><p> <em>P.S. Please keep at-risk children in your prayers. Thank you, again, for sharing our commitment to help these innocent young souls rediscover their hope for the future.<br></em><br></p><p style="text-align:center;"> <a class="btn" href="" target="_blank">DONATE TODAY</a></p>2022-08-15T05:00:00ZNews<img alt="Back to School" src="/locations/nevada/PublishingImages/Back-to-School-Appeal-photo.jpg" style="BORDER:0px solid;" /> <img alt="back to school" src="/locations/nevada/PublishingImages/Back-to-School-Appeal-photo.jpg" style="BORDER:0px solid;" />text/html; charset=utf-8 NewsEvent
Boys Town Hosts National Night Out Event Town Hosts National Night Out Event<p>On August 2<sup>nd</sup>, Boys Town's Home Campus hosted a National Night Out event for the youth and employees in the Family Home Program.</p><p>National Night Out is an annual community-building campaign that promotes police-community partnerships and neighborhood camaraderie to make our neighborhoods safer and more caring places to live.</p><p>Boys Town youth enjoyed learning more about police officers, firefighters, and security officers while partaking in fun activities such as a dunk tank, cornhole, and a water competition.</p><p>Boys Town would like to thank the Boys Town Police Department, the Boys Town Fire Department, the Omaha Police Department, and all other service agencies who participated in the event!</p><p style="text-align:center;"><img src="/locations/nebraska/news-and-events/PublishingImages/National-Night-Out-1.jpg" alt="" style="margin:5px;width:400px;height:285px;" /> <img src="/locations/nebraska/news-and-events/PublishingImages/National-Night-Out-2.jpg" alt="" style="margin:5px;width:400px;height:286px;" /><br></p><p><br></p>2022-08-12T05:00:00ZNews<img alt="" src="/locations/nebraska/news-and-events/PublishingImages/National-Night-Out-sm-bnr.jpg" style="BORDER:0px solid;" /> <img alt="" src="/locations/nebraska/news-and-events/PublishingImages/National-Night-Out-0.jpg" style="BORDER:0px solid;" />text/html; charset=utf-8 NewsEvent
Boys Town Nevada Hosts Back to School Bash Town Nevada Hosts Back to School Bash<p></p><p>Boys Town Nevada hosted their 2nd annual Back-to-school Bash at Gary Reese Freedom Park in Las Vegas, NV. On Saturday, July 30th, this fun and family event brought together an amazing group of community partners, corporations, and volunteers to prepare 1200 children and families for the upcoming school year. Event partners and sponsors provided more than 4200 school supplies and 800 backpacks to relieve the back-to-school burden to families in southern Nevada. Through community partnerships they were able to offer mobile dental exams and cleanings to anyone that attend. During the Bash, the youth played sports games, took photos at the photobooth and created art projects. Boys Town Nevada provided food and hosted giveaways for bikes and gift cards donated by event partners.</p><p>Overall, $19,290 was raised to go towards Boys Town's LIFT Together initiative. LIFT Together is an evidence-based model that improves problems in the local school district such as absenteeism, low parental engagement and disruptive classroom behaviors. Thank you to our generous sponsors, Anthem Health Care, Southwest Gas, SilverSummit Health Care and Molina Healthcare for their continued support of Boys Town Nevada and improving the lives of children and families in Nevada.​</p><p><span style="background-color:transparent;">​<img src="/locations/nevada/news-and-events/PublishingImages/Pages/Boys-Town-Nevada-Hosts-Back-to-School-Bash/back-school-2.jpg" alt="back-school-2.jpg" style="margin:5px;width:699px;height:321px;" /></span></p>2022-08-10T05:00:00ZNews<img alt="back to school bash" src="/locations/nevada/PublishingImages/back-school.jpg" style="BORDER:0px solid;" />text/html; charset=utf-8 NewsEvent
11th Annual Blue Water Bash – A “Splashing” Success Annual Blue Water Bash – A “Splashing” Success<p> <span class="img-zoom posR img-sm"> <img src="/locations/nebraska/news-and-events/PublishingImages/blue-water-bash-2022-1.jpg" data-action="zoom" alt="" /></span>More than 250 guests attended the 11<sup>th</sup> Annual Blue Water Bash, held on July 30, at the Boys Town Okoboji Camp.  This year's event was a “splashing" success, raising more than $200,000 to be used for winterizing the camp for year-round fun.</p><p>Guests enjoyed a beautiful, summer evening with delicious food, live and silent auctions and remarks from the event chairs, Jamin and Scott Trautman. Residents of the Skartvedt Family Home offered stories about what makes summers at Okoboji so special and Boys Town Vice Mayor, Megan, <a href="">shared the story</a> of her life-changing journey at Boys Town.</p><p> <span class="img-zoom posC img-lg"><img src="/locations/nebraska/news-and-events/PublishingImages/blue-water-bash-2022-5.jpg" data-action="zoom" alt="" /></span> </p><p>Born in Ethiopia and adopted at age 4 by an American family, Megan found the transition to a first world country to be difficult. Her adoptive parents also were not prepared to help her to process the childhood trauma that she had experienced.  Megan said, “From an early age, my definition of family included the words 'dysfunctional' and 'chaotic'."</p><p>Megan arrived at Boys Town in 2016, at age 11, as “a scared and malnourished 6th grader with no place to call home," she said, “I had no clue of the world I would gain, by losing the only one I knew, to come to Boys Town."</p><p>“I had my doubts, but eventually I was able to realize that I was a part of something much larger than myself. Boys Town has restored and revived me and taught me how to love again," said Megan. “My testimony is one of millions. Boys Town accepts us as we are. However broken, battered or bruised we may be, Boys Town is the home you can always return to. I am honored and humbled to be a part of the movement that aims to restore, revive and teach love nationally."</p><p>Megan's compelling story made the Blue Water Bash truly meaningful for all the guests, who later celebrated the evening with dancing and entertainment by B2wins and DJ Ness, and lakeside views of the Arnold's Park fireworks show.</p><div class="ms-rtestate-read ms-rte-wpbox" unselectable="on"><div class="ms-rtestate-notify ms-rtestate-read 31815644-2d26-490a-87b7-8d358d3e7374" id="div_31815644-2d26-490a-87b7-8d358d3e7374" unselectable="on"></div><div id="vid_31815644-2d26-490a-87b7-8d358d3e7374" unselectable="on" style="display:none;"></div></div> <p>Boys Town extends a heart-felt thank you to all the gracious donors and sponsors who contributed to this year's event. Your generous support affords our youth and families the opportunity to experience the memory-making joy of a safe and memorable family vacation.</p><p>If you were unable to attend and would like to learn more about the Blue Water Bash or donate, it's not too late. Visit <a href="" target="_blank"></a>. Our supporters and donors help to fund camp expenses, including food, supplies, upgrades and equipment. But there are many other ways you can support Boys Town, including sharing your time and talents. To learn more, please reach out to <a href=""></a>.</p>2022-08-04T05:00:00ZNews<img alt="" src="/locations/nebraska/news-and-events/PublishingImages/blue-water-bash-2022-2.jpg" style="BORDER:0px solid;" />text/html; charset=utf-8 NewsEvent
Boys Town North Florida Employees Go Above and Beyond for Family in Need Town North Florida Employees Go Above and Beyond for Family in Need<p></p><p>The Boys Town North Florida Care Coordination Services program recently had the opportunity to go above and beyond for a family who lacked resources and knowledge on how to navigate getting their child linked to needed services.</p><p>When the family was referred to Boys Town, they lived in an isolated area where it was very hard to find providers and they didn't speak English. Care Coordination Services Consultant Emily Backes made sure not to let these factors get in the way of providing care to the family.</p><p>Emily worked with Sara Soria, a Program Support Services Coordinator, to translate service plan documents into Spanish, so the family could actively participate by providing input. Sara also worked as a translator during calls with the family. This gave the mom confidence and made her feel like she had a voice in the process.</p><p>Emily also assisted the family in the application process to attend Leon County schools where the kids had the opportunity to be assessed academically, emotionally, and behaviorally. These assessments resulted in the development of a much-needed Individualized Educational Plan (IEP). Emily made sure interpreters were present at all school meetings, so the mother felt empowered to grow into a strong advocate for her whole family.</p><p>“This was an awesome example of how willing members of the Boys Town family are to go out of their way to not only help their coworkers, but ensure the families we work with receive the highest level of care, even when we need to get really creative to do so," said Emily. “This was truly an impressive collaboration!"​<br></p><p>​</p>2022-07-28T05:00:00ZNewstext/html; charset=utf-8 NewsEvent
Boys Town Common Sense Parenting Making a Positive Difference in New England Homes Town Common Sense Parenting Making a Positive Difference in New England Homes<p>​<span style="background-color:transparent;">​Boys Town New England recently completed its first in-person Common Sense Parenting (CSP) class since the start of the pandemic over two years ago.  </span><span style="background-color:transparent;">Taught by Olivia Gaudineer, Boys Town New England's Director of Community Support Services, the six-session, once-per-week class was held at His Providence Church in Swansea, Massachusetts.</span><span style="background-color:transparent;">  </span><span style="background-color:transparent;">The class was for parents or caregivers of school-aged children and taught easy-to-learn parenting techniques to address issues of communication, discipline, decision-making, relationships, self-control and school success.</span></p><p>The course was held in an intimate, small-class setting.  Parents were eager to communicate each week how they were able to build on their parenting skills and become more confident in raising their children. Course participants expressed they liked the engaging group atmosphere of sharing stories.</p><p>“It was heartwarming hearing examples of how parents put new skills they'd learned into practice in their homes," Olivia stated. </p><p>One success story involved a mother of a teenage daughter putting into practice a new skill she learned during the Teaching Self-Control session, which taught coping strategies for both parent and child to calm down.  “When an argument ensued, talking about issues with her daughter, the two separated and occupied space in different areas of the house to allow for calm down time," Olivia said. “After stepping back and taking some deep breaths they were able to regroup, sit together and work through the matter."</p><p>The CSP program is research-proven and based on the Boys Town Model® that focuses on delivering effective strategies, consistent structure and lasting, positive results. </p><p>“You helped me to see another way to instruct and teach my son.  The course gave me clear, concise, concrete ideas and principles to implement in my home," remarked one class member.  Another attendee said, “I found the course extremely helpful and valuable, and I am seeing definite changes in my parenting and my child's responses."</p><p>Boys Town New England recently received a grant from the Yawkey Foundation which enables us to collaborate with schools, churches and other community support agencies throughout Bristol County to help the community with parenting. </p><p>Interested in bringing a <a href="/parenting/Pages/common-sense-parenting.aspx">Common Sense Parenting</a> class to your area?  Please contact Olivia Gaudineer at 401-214-4960 or <a href="">​</a>.<br></p>2022-07-27T05:00:00ZNews<img alt="Swansea" src="/locations/north-florida/PublishingImages/New-England-CSP-Swansea-Picture.jpg" style="BORDER:0px solid;" />text/html; charset=utf-8 NewsEvent
Boys Town North Florida Hosts Annual Youth Awards Banquet Town North Florida Hosts Annual Youth Awards Banquet<p>​<span style="background-color:transparent;">​Ea</span><span style="background-color:transparent;">c</span><span style="background-color:transparent;">h summer, Boys Town North Florida staff and youth look forward to the annual Youth Awards Banquet. It is an evening dedicated to celebrating the Family Home program youth and their incredible achievements.</span></p><p>The banquet was hosted at the Florida State University Alumni Center. Youth got to ride in limousines to the event and arrived dressed to the nines in tuxedos and elegant dresses. They got to walk down the red carpet and received a personal introduction as they entered.</p><p>At the banquet, keynote speaker Jennifer Powell gave a personal, passionate speech on resilience and the importance of perseverance. Youth intently listened, internalizing her story of coming from an underprivileged background and working hard to become Mrs. Florida Earth in 2021 and Mrs. Florida America in May.</p><p>After the speech, the awards ceremony and citizenship ceremony took place. Awards for Youth Ambassador of the Year, Most Imaginative, Most Ambitious, and many others showcased each youth's individuality and unique abilities.</p><p>Boys Town North Florida would like to thank all the vendors and individuals who stepped in and made this event memorable for their youth, including the Aveda Institute, Mike's Limousines, the Florida State University Alumni Association, Formals by Vince, Coca-Cola, Abernathy entertainment, Radiance Make-up, and Mrs. Jennifer Powell.  Their generous contributions made the 2022 Youth Awards Banquet a night to remember!<br></p><p><img src="/locations/north-florida/news-and-events/PublishingImages/Pages/Boys-Town-North-Florida-Hosts-Annual-Youth-Awards-Banquet/citizen-awards.jpg" alt="citizen-awards.jpg" class="ms-rtePosition-4" style="margin:5px;" /><br></p>2022-07-22T05:00:00ZNews<img alt="Citizen awards" height="295" src="/locations/north-florida/PublishingImages/citizen-awards-rollup.jpg" width="448" style="BORDER:0px solid;" />text/html; charset=utf-8 NewsEvent
Board of Directors Spotlight: Jermaine Bucknor of Directors Spotlight: Jermaine Bucknor<p></p><p>Jermaine Bucknor is the Chief Financial Officer for Wellington Regional Medical Center. He has more than 20 years of healthcare experience and a comprehensive knowledge of fiscal management. Prior to joining Wellington Regional, he served for more than two years as the CFO for two hospitals owned by Community Health Systems in Bentonville, Arkansas. Prior to that position, he was the CFO for Alliance Health Medical (CHS) in Midwest City, Oklahoma, and CFO at multiple hospitals with Advent Health (formally Advent Health System). Over the years he has worked collaboratively with other executives to improve operational efficiencies and drive margin growth.</p><p>He earned an MBA from La Sierra University in California and a bachelor's degree in accounting from Northern Caribbean University in Jamaica. He is currently Wellington Regional's representing member at the Rotary Club of Wellington. He was a member of the Foundation Board at Florida Hospital Memorial and served as a member of the Opportunity Center Board – a community skills development organization in Ponca City Oklahoma. </p><p>He is married to Candice Bucknor, RN. They have two boys, Jermaine Jr, 17 and Johnathon, 15. </p><p>He enjoys multiple sporting activities, classic cars, spending time with family, and being of service to others.</p><p><strong>Why did you become involved with Boys Town South Florida?</strong></p><p>To support the organization as it continues to fulfill its mission and vision. <br></p><p><strong>What do you wish other people knew about Boys Town?</strong></p><p>The great work that is being done and the number of lives being positively impacted across numerous communities.<br></p><p><strong>What is your favorite program/service that Boys Town South Florida offers? Why?</strong></p><p>I do love all the services provided by Boys Town but the one at the top is, Parent-Child+.  I believe this program provides the opportunity to set a strong foundation early in the child's life. <br></p><p>Kids tend to be very impressionable at the ages of 2 & 3 and what better time to help develop healthy, positive experiences.<br></p><p><strong>What others will be surprised to know about you?</strong></p><p>I am very handy around the house and possess skills to perform several projects. I am very passionate about law enforcement. My goal at one time was to become a law enforcement officer.​<br></p><p><strong>Favorite Quote</strong></p><p>“You will face many defeats in life, but never let yourself be defeated.”<br><span style="background-color:transparent;">               Maya Angelou</span></p><p><br></p>2022-07-22T05:00:00ZNews<img alt="" src="/locations/south-florida/news-and-events/PublishingImages/South-FL-Jermaine-Bucknor.jpg" style="BORDER:0px solid;" />text/html; charset=utf-8 NewsEvent
Message from Bethany Lacey, Executive Director from Bethany Lacey, Executive Director<img src="file:///Users/yuawei/Library/Group%20Containers/UBF8T346G9.Office/TemporaryItems/msohtmlclip/clip_image001.jpg" alt="" style="margin:5px;" /> <p>As we look to what's ahead in the second half of 2022, we see so many opportunities to continue to support at-risk children and families in South Florida!</p><p>Now more than ever, the <strong>need for services is critical</strong>. <strong>Anxiety and depression rates have skyrocketed</strong> from 11% in 2019 to 42% last year. Additionally, the <strong>suicide rate between the ages of 10 and 24 has risen 60%</strong> between 2007 and 2018, and it is <strong>currently the second leading cause of death</strong> in that age group.</p><p>Although these statistics are bleak, I choose to look through the lens of <span style="text-decoration:underline;">hope</span>. Boys Town South Florida remains committed to bringing hope, healing and help to the children in our community.</p><p>This year, in response to the overwhelming need in our community, we are launching a new program. <strong>We are opening the first LIFT Together program in Florida</strong>. LIFT Together with Boys Town<sup>SM</sup> is bringing together educators, students, families, community members and Boys Town experts to address at-risk student's social-emotional needs. <strong>This coordinated action is what makes the initiative so powerful, because only together can we positively change the life of a child</strong>.</p><p>The implementation of the LIFT Together programming requires a multi-year commitment that ensures the quality of programming, relationship building and sustainability over time. We are continually looking for our community to partner with us to make this program available to more schools.</p><p> <strong>Thank you</strong> to all of you for your support that enables Boys Town to continue to serve even more families and children in the coming years. If you want to hear more about how we are partnering with our community to address the needs of families, I invite you to attend our <strong>Family Community Action Summit on October 6, 2022.</strong> Please see below for more details.<br></p>2022-07-22T05:00:00ZNews<img alt="" src="/locations/south-florida/news-and-events/PublishingImages/Bethany.jpg" style="BORDER:0px solid;" />text/html; charset=utf-8 NewsEvent
Boys Town South Florida’s Primary Project Helps Bella Overcome Anxiety Issues Town South Florida’s Primary Project Helps Bella Overcome Anxiety Issues<p></p><p><em>This story was written by a mom whose daughter participated in our Primary Project years ago. Although many years have passed, this mom saw how her daughter was able to overcome anxiety and feel good about going to school. The program truly helped set her on a successful academic path. Primary Project is offered at 12 elementary schools in Palm Beach County, and it helps over 600 kindergarten and first-grade students improve their adjustment to school and enhance their social and emotional well-being.</em><br><strong> </strong><br>When my daughter Bella was in first grade, she started showing signs of anxiety, especially at school. We had gone through a lot of changes in our household leading up to that year, but it seemed to culminate with me going back to work for the first time ever in her short life. </p><p>She really struggled with not wanting to go (to school) each day. She would cry on the way to school, and often the staff would have to come outside and walk her into the building to get her past the front doors. She was the kid who would literally cry and hold on to the door jamb as I tried to get her inside. It was rough. On top of that, she was struggling with her self-esteem, feeling like she just wasn't “enough" somehow. </p><p>That's when Primary Project came in and changed her life. Bella went from a shy, anxious, introverted child to an extroverted girl who seems to know everyone. She has gone from standing on the fringes of her life to being fully immersed in her experiences both on campus and off.</p><p>Bella is now 15 and just finished her freshman year in high school. This past year she was in a competition color guard team, active in her JTOTC and ready to get involved every time the school doors open. She makes friends everywhere she goes and seems to have a special gift for finding the lonely persons and bringing them into her circle.</p><p>Bella loves to be the center of attention and is proud of her academic and athletic accomplishments. She will (without prompting, lol) share that she can “squat lift more than the guys on her squad." She also talks your ear off when sharing what she wrote about in her AICE General Papers class or the newest thing she learned in her Holocaust history class.</p><p>Bella is strong, smart, brave and kind. She has had her struggles, and when she started having anxiety again during COVID and shutdowns, we once again turned to Boys Town South Florida. Their Behavioral Health Clinic was there to help guide her and give her new skills that have continued to shape her into this amazing young woman. I wish I were 1/10th as incredible as she is! I am forever grateful for Primary Project for starting her on this great journey to become the best version of herself she could be."<br><br></p><p><br></p>2022-07-22T05:00:00ZNews<img alt="" src="/locations/south-florida/news-and-events/PublishingImages/SFL-Bella-sucess-story-rollover.jpg" style="BORDER:0px solid;" /> <img alt="" src="/locations/south-florida/news-and-events/PublishingImages/SFL-Bella-sucess-story.jpg" style="BORDER:0px solid;" />text/html; charset=utf-8 NewsEvent

Kara Neuverth
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Jordan Weinandt
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