It was September of 1985 when I arrived at Boys’ Town of Italy. Though I was initially not happy to leave my mother and my friends, it soon became a second home and family to me. I didn't know it yet, but the best years of my life had begun. During my eight years there, I learned about myself and how I could give to others. I also learned to live with over a hundred children of different nationalities! Through self-government, I was elected to all the roles of our Town: commissioner, judge and mayor. I loved being part of a system where my contribution was important, where I could support the younger citizens and be guided by the older citizens. Living at Boys’ Town gave me the opportunity to devote much of my time to computer science, which helped me find work after my time there.
Today I am an employee of the Ministry of the Interior in Italy. I work for the Commission for refugees arriving in Italy daily. To my astonishment, in recent years, many young people from Boys’ Town have also passed through my office to tell their story. It has been very meaningful to see them receive the help they need.Through my work, I have met many young refugees who come from India. So, when Gabriele asked me to go with him on a journey last year to visit A Chance In Life's Towns in India, I gladly accepted. I was very happy to see other troubled boys and girls in other parts of the world receive the same support I had in my years at Boys’ Town. I am grateful to Boys’ Town for allowing me to grow up in a safe and wonderful place to the Monsignor for his extraordinary character.
Claudio Di Biagio, ex-cittadini of La Città dei Ragazzi (Boys' Town of Rome)