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Boys Town is its own independent community; a village with its own mayor and police department

Posted at 8:34 PM, Dec 15, 2021

OMAHA, Neb. (KMTV) — The signs for Boys Town are pretty prominent around town. It was established in 1917 and incorporated in 1934. It is considered a suburb of Omaha that operates independently. Originally it was a home for boys, but girls are residents there as well.

The founder, Father Flanagan thought it would operate best this way.

"He wanted us solely dedicated to the care of children and helping families to heal. That is why he set it up separate from the City of Omaha. He wanted the children to understand civic responsibility," said Tim Lynch, Director of Community Programs at Boys Town.

It has its own police department, schools, houses and town hall.

The Mayor of Boys Town, Maggie Hagan is not what one expects.

"I believe, Boys Town is important because it gives kids the opportunity to see their full potential because they have so many people who are willing to help you, an environment of love support," said Hagan.

In its developing stages, Boys Town was an outlier because it wanted to help boys from different religions, races, and backgrounds, and have them live together.

"We talk about Father Flanagan's struggles out here on Overlook Farm, when they ran out of money, ran out of food and no one cared," continued Lynch.

Currently, they have more than 100 buildings and more than 300 boys and girls living in the town. The metro site is the hub for its national programs that serve more than two million children each year.

The statues positioned around the campus actually represent children who lived on the farm.

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