Northern Cheyenne Nation breaks ground on new wellness center
Northern Cheyenne Tribal Nation
On Thursday, April 23, 2020, Northern Cheyenne Tribal President Rynalea Pena, along with the Tribal Council and the Tribal Board of Health Board of Commissioners, held a ground breaking ceremony to celebrate the beginning of construction for Phase I of the Nation’s new Wellness Center.
In adherence to the social distancing orders, the gathering was small with a limited audience. Key leaders of the Northern Cheyenne community attended and shared the history of the project, from overall visions and missions to the extensive planning and thorough deliberations and discussions that went into the development of this new project.
Phase I includes a full-size gymnasium, a healthy classroom, locker rooms, saunas and office space. Phase II will consist of an expanded welcome community area, computer learning and literacy room, physical training facility to include cardiovascular, strength and functional training areas, also an open-office floor-plan and increased storage areas. Phase III will be to relocate and incorporate the Tribal Board of Health administration offices. This Wellness Center project is made possible through Settlement Funds of $2.5 million. Phase I construction is estimated to be completed in early 2021.
In her address, Northern Cheyenne Tribal President Pena said, “This is a long-awaited day. This building is a blessing when we think about how it will impact our health and our way of life. This is a good thing”.
Tribal Councilman Lane Spotted Elk added, “The ground breaking signifies our commitment to the health and welfare of our community.”
Northern Cheyenne Tribal Board of Health, Administrator Eugene Little Coyote reiterated “With this Wellness Center we will be able to put a stronger focus, attention to education and more consciousness into health, so our people can live long good lives.”
The new building will be located in a central part of town, between the office of Public Assistance and the automotive oil and lube center, off of Cheyenne Avenue. The earth work of the project is set to begin in the next couple weeks. Bear Star Enterprises, Inc. is the general contractor for the project.