Nebraska-based nonprofit shifts away from residential care

Posted By: Channel 8 Eyewitness News

OMAHA, Neb. (AP) _ As a Nebraska-based organization that helps at-risk youth celebrates its 100th birthday in Omaha, the nonprofit is focusing less on the residential care model that made it well-known.

Boys Town officials announced in June that the organization was closing residential care sites in New York, Texas, California and Florida.

The organization began a century ago when a young Irish priest welcomed homeless boys into a run-down mansion in downtown Omaha. The residential care model involves placing groups of six to eight children with emotional and behavioral issues in single-family homes with married couples. The average stay is 12 to 18 months with the goal of returning kids to families.

The site closings leave nine Boys Town sites in six states and the District of Columbia.