(L-R) District 12 Tribal Councilor Dick Lay, District 9 Tribal Councilor Curtis Snell, At-Large Tribal Councilor Jack Baker, Cherokee Nation Secretary of State Chuck Hoskin Jr., District 8 Tribal Councilor Shawn Crittenden, Deputy Speaker of the Council Victoria Vazquez, Speaker of the Council Joe Byrd, District 13 Tribal Councilor Buel Anglen, District 10 Tribal Councilor Harley Buzzard, District 14 Tribal Councilor Keith Austin and At-Large Tribal Councilor Wanda Hatfield.
TAHLEQUAH, Okla. — The Cherokee Nation donated $195,000 to eight Boys & Girls Club programs throughout northeastern Oklahoma on Monday.
Recipients of the funding include clubs in Washington, Delaware, Sequoyah, Rogers, Nowata, Cherokee, Mayes and Adair counties.
Funding is based on the number of Native American students in each program. In total, the eight area programs serve more than 11,000 students, with nearly 60 percent being Native American.
“Investing in the Boys & Girls Club is a collaboration that benefits Cherokee Nation’s most precious resource, our youth. We proudly support the work of local clubs within our communities because it benefits kids, families, local schools and overall community health," Secretary of State Chuck Hoskin Jr. said. “This is an opportunity to provide mentors and create positive, lifelong influences for Cherokees. Our youth deserve everything we can do for them, so they can fully grow into their God-given potential.”
Since 2008, the Cherokee Nation has given more than $2 million to help Boys & Girls Club programs in the tribe’s 14-county jurisdiction. The clubs develop character and leadership skills among both Cherokee and non-Cherokee students alike, providing activities for children after school and in the summer.
“The Boys & Girls Club units in the 14 counties of the Cherokee Nation provide a service beyond measure,” Tribal Council Speaker Joe Byrd said. “These clubs help so many Cherokee kids who otherwise might not have any solid direction or activity after school. I'm proud we're able to contribute to such a worthy cause. The clubs are often a godsend to our working parents, as they help youth with tutoring, as well as involving them in organized sports, art and cultural pursuits.”
Adair County’s program oversees clubs at Stilwell, Rocky Mountain, Maryetta and Zion schools. More than 80 percent of Boys & Girls Club participants from the four schools are Native American.
“To be honest, it would be hard for us to keep our doors open without the assistance of Cherokee Nation,” Adair County Boys & Girls Club Board President Dan Collins said. “This is going to help tremendously.”
Kristal Diver, chief professional officer of Adair County Boys & Girls Club, said Cherokee Nation’s donation will be used to cover overhead costs of the program, including the purchase of supplies for summer school activities, which aren’t covered by other funding sources.
The Boys & Girls Clubs of America serves more than 4 million youth in the United States and on military bases across the world.
The Cherokee Nation donated to the following Boys & Girls Clubs:
Organization/Total Enrollment/Award Amount
Cherokee Nation News Release
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