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A chance to participate in a battle of COMIC proportions: Boys Town North Florida’s Clash of the Heroes Character Design Contesthttps://www.boystown.org/locations/north-florida/news-and-events/Pages/Heroes-Character-Design-Cotest.aspxA chance to participate in a battle of COMIC proportions: Boys Town North Florida’s Clash of the Heroes Character Design Contest<p>As part of their summer-rec activities, the youth living at Boys Town North Florida had the opportunity to demonstrate their creative talents in an exercise involving core aspects of literacy, including reading and writing. The fun, creative activity -- <em>The Clash of the Heroes Character Design Contest</em> was held July 13- August 24, 2020.  The contest centered around the creation of a special edition of a comic book and consisted of two themed, academically connected stages: character design and creative writing. </p><p>First, the youth created an original superhero character. Then, they created a backstory for the winning character, as well as a conflict resolution for the hero. A series of educational workshops on “Character Design" and “Elements of Creative Writing" were provided to youth to introduce and teach the associated skills for each contest stage.  </p><p><em>BTNF's Clash of the Heroes</em> contest resulted in the creation of some amazing characters and creative, intriguing stories, with <em>Night Angel</em> (created by Brooklyn) and the <em>Adventures of Night Angel</em> (written by Alex) emerging as the 2020 BTNF Character Design Contest Winners.</p><p>“We are very proud of all the youth and the process that identified our finalists and 2020 contest winners," said Executive Director Marcus Lampkin.</p><p>The youth identified finalists from each family home to represent their respective homes and to advance to the final stage-national voting. As part of national voting, BTNF faculty, staff, as well as “BTNF friends" and board members joined individuals from around the country in casting their vote for their favorite character and storyline.</p><p>In addition to the honor of having the winning character and storyline featured in a one-page stand-alone comic script, the finalists, runner-up, and winners (and family homes) for each stage were recognized at Boys Town North Florida's Annual Youth Awards Banquet. </p><p>This activity was offered to BTNF youth in partnership with the National Center on Improving Literacy (NCIL) and supported by the Florida Center for Reading Research (FCRR) at Florida State University.</p><p>Boys Town North Florida recognizes Dr. La'Tara Lampkin, who coordinated the activity, as well as faculty from NCIL/FCRR, Dr. Chris Stanley & Daniel Hooker, and Boys Town North Florida staff Gina Rogers, Wayne Longley and Loma Garland. A special thank you was given to long-time BTNF supporter, Nathan Archer, Director of Communications at FCRR and cartoonist for the Tallahassee Democrat, and Mars K.R., who developed and facilitated the educational workshops. <br><span><img src="/locations/north-florida/news-and-events/PublishingImages/clashOfHeros.jpg" alt="Clash of the Heroes" style="margin:5px;" /></span></p>2020-12-01T06:00:00ZNews<img alt="Brooklyn of Boys Town" src="/locations/north-florida/news-and-events/PublishingImages/Brooklyn-w-Character--Counts-Award.jpg" style="BORDER:0px solid;" />text/html; charset=utf-8 NewsEvent
ART Town Academy Helps Students Learn During Pandemichttps://www.boystown.org/locations/north-florida/news-and-events/Pages/ART-Town-Academy-Helps-Students-Learn-During-Pandemic.aspxART Town Academy Helps Students Learn During Pandemic<p>As students struggle to adjust to the new normal of online schooling, Boys Town North Florida is taking huge strides to keep our Boys Town children and families' digital frustrations to the bare minimum. We have found that home is not a conducive learning environment when trying to stay motivated and free from everyday distractions. </p><p>So, the Boys Town team has decided to get creative and come up with a game plan on how to keep these kids on track with not only their academics, but their overall mental and physical health. And that is how the new Boys Town North Florida Educational Engagement Program at ART Town was born, or what I like to call, the <strong>ART Town Academy</strong>. Monday through Friday our Family Home campus youth report to our ART Town facility to complete their Florida Virtual School classes. </p><p>The space is perfect for young learners where they have a designated work area, small computer lab, crafts room, mini-library and so much more. Just like the traditional school setting, the children are provided with incremental breaks for stretching, snacks and trips to the bathroom to keep them feeling refreshed and ready to learn. Apart from providing resources to complete their assigned coursework during the day, we are implementing educational workshops, projects and volunteer-led programs for the children to take part in. These initiatives range anywhere from story reading with therapy dogs to volunteer-made video seminars on “how to build your resume," even an after-school yoga class to unwind after a long day of digital learning. Our team has been so impressed with how the youth have been able to transition during this difficult time and still find huge success academically – we have their report cards to prove it!</p><p><img src="/locations/north-florida/news-and-events/PublishingImages/Andrew.jpg" alt="Andrew at Boys Town" style="margin:5px;" /><br></p>2020-12-01T06:00:00ZNews<img alt="ArtTown at Boys Town" src="/locations/north-florida/news-and-events/PublishingImages/Art-room---school.jpg" style="BORDER:0px solid;" />text/html; charset=utf-8 NewsEvent
Foster Care Spotlight: The Perry’shttps://www.boystown.org/locations/north-florida/news-and-events/Pages/Foster-Care-Spotlight-The-Perrys.aspxFoster Care Spotlight: The Perry’s<p>Callie and Marvin Perry have been foster parents with Boys Town North Florida for 8 years and have had approximately 10 placements during this time. The Perry's typically have children placed in their home for longer periods of times than what is expected in foster care due to the level of care they are able to provide. The youth currently placed in their home have been with the Perry's since December of 2019. They have done an excellent job working with the youth to teach staying calm strategies, self-control, and social skills. The Perry's have been one of Boys Town North Florida's longest standing foster parents and are always willing to help us with respite needs, placements, and support to other foster parents. We are grateful for their commitment to improving the lives of the vulnerable children in our community. </p>2020-12-01T06:00:00ZNews<img alt="Foster Family at Boys Town - Perry's" src="/locations/north-florida/news-and-events/PublishingImages/Perry-Foster-Parents.jpg" style="BORDER:0px solid;" />text/html; charset=utf-8 NewsEvent
Youth Spotlight: Alize Blackhttps://www.boystown.org/locations/north-florida/news-and-events/Pages/Youth-Spotlight-Alize-Black.aspxYouth Spotlight: Alize Black<p>​Alize came to Boys Town North Florida almost two years ago when she could no longer reside with her family. As any child going through such distressing circumstances, Alize struggled to navigate her emotions and stay focused in school. Over the course of her stay on Family Home Program's campus, she found herself surrounded by friends and Family-Teachers® that gave her the support and confidence she needed to be a happier and healthier teenager. Over the last year, Alize has built strong bonds with her Family-Teachers, Mike and Joan Dunn, and Assistant Family-Teacher, Shamara Folks, who have never wavered in supporting not only her mental and emotional needs but her now, thriving academic efforts. This level of dedication showed Alize that she was important and that her education was a key priority on her journey to happiness and success. Family Home Consultant Nicole Wertz says, “Alize has shown her desire to reach her goals since she has been in the Family Home Program and we could not be prouder of her for her accomplishments!" So, when Boys Town received the call that Alize was awarded “Student of the Month" by Florida Virtual School there was nothing but pure delight and satisfaction – we knew she could do it! </p>2020-12-01T06:00:00ZNews<img alt="Alize at Boys Town" src="/locations/north-florida/news-and-events/PublishingImages/Alize.jpg" style="BORDER:0px solid;" />text/html; charset=utf-8 NewsEvent
In The News: 'That's really heartbreaking': The New Reality of Foster Care during the COVID-19 Pandemichttps://www.boystown.org/locations/nebraska/news-and-events/Pages/Foster-Care-during-the-COVID-19.aspxIn The News: 'That's really heartbreaking': The New Reality of Foster Care during the COVID-19 Pandemic<p style="text-align:left;">​<span style="background-color:transparent;">COVID-19 has hit Omaha hard and foster homes are no exception. Matt Priest, Director of Foster Family Services at Boys Town, spoke with KETV to discuss the hardships the foster care system is dealing with. Read the full story on </span><a href="https://www.ketv.com/article/thats-really-heartbreaking-the-new-reality-of-foster-care-during-the-covid-19-pandemic/34706293" style="background-color:transparent;">KETV.com</a><span style="background-color:transparent;">.</span><span style="background-color:transparent;">​</span></p><p><br></p>2020-11-19T06:00:00ZNewstext/html; charset=utf-8 NewsEvent
In The News: Boys Town National Hotline Bolsters Youth Suicide Preventionhttps://www.boystown.org/locations/nebraska/news-and-events/Pages/Boys-Town-National-Hotline-Bolsters-Youth-Suicide-Prevention.aspxIn The News: Boys Town National Hotline Bolsters Youth Suicide Prevention<p>​<span style="text-align:center;background-color:transparent;">​The ongoing pandemic has disrupted mental health services in many schools while also contributing to increases in depression, anxiety, substance abuse, and post-traumatic stress disorder. The Boys Town National Hotline is using Safe2HelpNE, a partnership with area schools, as well as their website, YourLifeYourVoice, to give young people access to free, supportive counseling and self-care strategies. </span><span style="text-align:center;background-color:transparent;"> <br></span><span style="text-align:center;background-color:transparent;">Visit </span><a href="https://omaha.com/opinion/columnists/midlands-voices-boys-town-national-hotline-bolsters-youth-suicide-prevention/article_767c12b6-0a2e-5111-bbab-4024d8bcc6bc.html" style="text-align:center;background-color:transparent;">Omaha.com</a><span style="text-align:center;background-color:transparent;"> to read the full article.</span><span style="text-align:center;background-color:transparent;">​</span></p><p><br></p>2020-11-19T06:00:00ZNews<img alt="suicide prevention" src="/about/PublishingImages/suicide-prevention.jpg" style="BORDER:0px solid;" />text/html; charset=utf-8 NewsEvent
Distance Learning with the Family Home programhttps://www.boystown.org/locations/louisiana/news-and-events/Pages/Distance-Learning-with-the-Family-Home-program.aspxDistance Learning with the Family Home program<p>​</p><p>Like all parents this school year, Boys Town Louisiana had to decide if our residential youth should continue virtual learning, go back to physical school, or try a combination of the two. With up to 18 youth in our Family Home program at any given time all going to different schools, Boys Town Louisiana ultimately decided to proceed with distance learning this semester to prevent possible exposure to COVID-19. We did this to preserve the health and safety of youth and staff.</p><p>In general, youth aged 12-17 reside in our Family Home program (in other words, middle and high schoolers). Within these pivotal grade levels, students typically have eight different class periods. When schools suddenly closed in March, our Family-Teachers became full-time classroom educators and tutors overnight. They were challenged to design desk areas at home, balance various school schedules, and keep students focused. </p><p>The challenges of the spring led Boys Town to recognize the need for additional support so that both students and Family-Teachers can be successful. We hired two Education Specialists specifically to assist our residential youth with distance learning. These staff members have teaching backgrounds and are able to assist youth with class assignments and homework. With extra support from the Education Specialists, the Family-Teachers can take turns supervising and offer individualized attention, allowing them the opportunity to take breaks.</p><p>On Mondays, Wednesdays and Fridays, the Family Home Program meets at Boys Town Louisiana's New Orleans East office, which has enough desks and space for the youth to socially distance and be monitored relatively easily. Simulating a collective school environment also helps our youth maintain a routine and be social with other students their age. They have even started incorporating physical education and a book club during the school day! </p><p>“As most of our youth come to us with some academic deficiencies, I started the book club to strengthen our youths' reading comprehension skills and help to expand their vocabulary," explains Family Home Consultant, Brandon Devezin. Several staff members have also joined the book club and get to spend more time with youth as fellow readers, as opposed to teachers.</p><p>They plan on reading short stories, with vocabulary as an added exercise; youth have to read the book but also define the words that they didn't know the meaning of. Their first story is “<em>The Secret Lives of the Nine Negro Teeth of George Washington</em>," a fantasy and comedy.   </p><p>Interested in helping our residential youth in their learning? We are looking for volunteers to help simulate another part of school: the cafeteria! Specifically, we are looking for food donations to feed 15 youth and staff three days a week at our New Orleans East Office (6600 Plaza Drive, Suite 212, New Orleans, LA 70127). If interested, please contact Julia Turkevich: <a href="mailto:Julia.turkevich@boystown.org">Julia.turkevich@boystown.org</a>​.<br></p>2020-11-13T06:00:00ZNewstext/html; charset=utf-8 NewsEvent
Because of you, Boys Town Central Florida saw a lot of GOOD in 2020https://www.boystown.org/locations/central-florida/news-and-events/Pages/bc-of-you-bt-Central-Florida-saw-a-lot-of-GOOD-in-2020.aspxBecause of you, Boys Town Central Florida saw a lot of GOOD in 2020<p>In these times of crisis, we stand together to serve. Despite a trying year…Because of you, we still saw a lot of GOOD in 2020. We are so grateful for our community partners, friends and supporters in Central Florida. We wouldn't have these incredible success stories to share if it wasn't for you. Thank you!</p><div class="columns article-grid"><div class="column"> <a class="article" href="/locations/central-florida/news-and-events/Pages/Following-Her-Dream.aspx"> <img src="/locations/central-florida/news-and-events/PublishingImages/white-coat-2a.jpg" alt="Boys Town" /><span class="article-title">Following Her Dream <span> </span></span></a></div><div class="column"> <a class="article" href="/locations/nebraska/news-and-events/Pages/Boys-Town-Stands-for-Racial-Equality.aspx"> <img src="/locations/central-florida/news-and-events/PublishingImages/Flanagan_with_Boys_1942_682-rollup.jpg" alt="Boys Town" /><span class="article-title">Boys Town Stands for Racial Equality <span> </span></span></a></div><div class="column"> <a class="article" href="/locations/nebraska/news-and-events/Pages/Boys-Town-Youth-Receive-New-Beds-from-TempurSealy.aspx"> <img src="/locations/central-florida/news-and-events/PublishingImages/youth-received-mattress-donation.jpg" alt="Boys Town" /><span class="article-title">Boys Town Youth Receive New Beds from TempurSealy<span> </span></span></a></div></div>2020-11-13T06:00:00ZNewstext/html; charset=utf-8 NewsEvent
Because of you, Boys Town Washington DC saw a lot of GOOD in 2020https://www.boystown.org/locations/washington-dc/news-and-events/Pages/Because-of-you-Boys-Town-Washington-DC-saw-a-lot-of-GOOD-in-2020.aspxBecause of you, Boys Town Washington DC saw a lot of GOOD in 2020<p>In these times of crisis, we stand together to serve. Despite a trying year…Because of you, we still saw a lot of GOOD in 2020. We are so grateful for our community partners, friends and supporters in Washington DC. We wouldn't have these incredible success stories to share if it wasn't for you. Thank you!</p><div class="columns article-grid"><div class="column"> <a class="article" href="/locations/washington-dc/news-and-events/Pages/Overcoming-Adversity-Pays-Off-for-Washington-D-C-Family.aspx"><img src="/locations/washington-dc/news-and-events/PublishingImages/wash-1.jpg" alt="Boys Town" /> <span class="article-title">Overcoming Adversity Pays Off for Washington DC Family <span> </span></span></a></div><div class="column"> <a class="article" href="/locations/washington-dc/news-and-events/Pages/On-the-Way-Home-Consultant-Position-Helps-Boys-Town-Washington-DC-Youth-Transition-to-Real-Life.aspx"><img src="/locations/washington-dc/news-and-events/PublishingImages/wash-2.jpg" alt="Boys Town" /> <span class="article-title">Consultant Position Helps DC Youth Transition to Real LIfe <span> </span></span></a></div><div class="column"> <a class="article" href="/locations/washington-dc/news-and-events/Pages/Boys-Town-Washington-DC-Adds-Telehealth-Sessions-to-Reach-Patients.aspx"><img src="/locations/washington-dc/news-and-events/PublishingImages/wash-3.jpg" alt="Boys Town" /> <span class="article-title">DC Adds Telehealth Sessions to Reach Patients <span> </span></span></a></div><div class="column"> <a class="article" href="/locations/washington-dc/news-and-events/Pages/BT-WASDC-Helps-Youth-Find-a-New-Comfort-Zone.aspx"><img src="/locations/washington-dc/news-and-events/PublishingImages/wash-4.jpg" alt="Boys Town" /> <span class="article-title">Washington DC Helps Youth Find a New Comfort Zone <span> </span></span></a></div></div>2020-11-13T06:00:00ZNewstext/html; charset=utf-8 NewsEvent
Because of you, Boys Town Louisiana saw a lot of GOOD in 2020https://www.boystown.org/locations/louisiana/news-and-events/Pages/Because-of-you,-Boys-Town-Louisiana-saw-a-lot-of-GOOD-in-2020.aspxBecause of you, Boys Town Louisiana saw a lot of GOOD in 2020<p>In these times of crisis, we stand together to serve. Despite a trying year…Because of you, we still saw a lot of GOOD in 2020. We are so grateful for our community partners, friends and supporters in Louisiana. We wouldn't have these incredible success stories to share if it wasn't for you. Thank you!</p><div class="columns article-grid"><div class="column"> <a class="article" href="/locations/louisiana/news-and-events/Pages/EHS-Team-Ensures-Critical-Learning-Despite-COVID-Challenges.aspx"> <img src="/locations/louisiana/news-and-events/PublishingImages/lou-1.jpg" alt="Boys Town" /> <span class="article-title">EHS Team Ensures Critical Learning Despite COVID Challenges <span> </span></span></a></div><div class="column"> <a class="article" href="/locations/louisiana/news-and-events/Pages/BT-Senior-Spotlight-Dwayne-and-Darius-story.aspx"> <img src="/locations/louisiana/news-and-events/PublishingImages/lou-2.jpg" alt="Boys Town" /> <span class="article-title">Boys Town Senior Spotlight Dwayne and Darius story <span> </span></span></a></div><div class="column"> <a class="article" href="/locations/louisiana/news-and-events/Pages/Thanks-to-our-Generous-Community.aspx"> <img src="/locations/louisiana/news-and-events/PublishingImages/lou-3.jpg" alt="Boys Town" /> <span class="article-title">Thanks to our Generous Community <span> </span></span></a></div></div>2020-11-13T06:00:00ZNewstext/html; charset=utf-8 NewsEvent

Kara Neuverth
Media Relations Director
531-355-1305
Kara.Neuverth@boystown.org

Jordan Weinandt
Media Relations Specialist
531-355-1273
Jordan.Weinandt@boystown.org

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