I can't speak for a few but I can speak for many I was in notation in the late 80's I was a child with a severe issue with authority along with a few of my friends who ended up there we were involved with gangs drugs violence you name it in fact I can easily say I know we'll over 100 kids who went through the location program who are extremely grateful for the turn around they provided these people could have and many most likely would have ended up in prison or dead had it not been for them many of the ones who graduated from there went on to live very successful lives quite a few with full ride scholarships to college after graduation I realize everyone can't be helped that's not reality but for the ones who did utilize the program for what it had to offer it was a tremendous help I was a knucklehead and left early had I stayed and not complained about what I didn't like about and taken advantage of the things they did offer my life most likely would've turned out way better then it did heck to this day I utilize some of the learning and teaching techniques I learned from there even though I did leave early I can say without a doubt being there and learning what I learned aided in my survival quite literally
I guess I can say that I was an at-risk youth who was forced to live here. It really didn't help me. We only were provided with therapy once a month, which is far below what would have been needed to help me. I was forced to take a religion class, where whenever I spoke up about homophobia or sexism that was actually being taught in the classroom, I was sent to the office and told to write an apology to the teacher I "disrespected." Their sex education class was also a religion class, so it was based on being anti- contraception and pro-abstinence, (which statistically, is not effective in reducing pregnancy in teenagers. One time I had to eat dinner at the leader 's (not sure what else to call him) house on campus and I was told to not say I was a vegetarian and to "eat around the meat," which was unacceptable to me because I had been vegetarian for a few years and I was very repulsed by meat. Apparently the leader had, in the past, argued with a kid about vegetarianism, which is disrespectful and just not okay. Also I was not supposed to bring up that I was an atheist, as not to get on the leader's "bad side." I did not have a voice at this place. And neither will any child who goes here, whether they are very religious and agree with everything Boys Town has to say. So, If you are considering privately placing your child here for reasons such as mental health issues, depression, anxiety, or poor schoolwork, think again. Consider a therapeutic boarding school or therapeutic wilderness program. Boys Town is based on punishment and reward, not rehabilitation and therapy. I know this from experience. I would say, personally, Boys Town made me more depressed and anxious. Please consider other options, if you have a choice and want a therapeutic environment for your child.