Cherokee Nation Principal Chief Bill John Baker visits with 3-year-old Luke at the grand opening of the Stilwell Child Development Center on Friday.
STILWELL, Okla. — More children are being served in Cherokee Nation’s new $4.2 million Stilwell Child Development Center, where officials held a grand opening celebration Friday.
The state-of-the art facility on North 8th Street will serve 98 children, ages 6 weeks to 4 years old. The center, built to replace the former facility on Flint Street, created 10 new jobs and added about 50 additional day care slots.
“Increasing access to early childhood education is critical for the sustained success of the Cherokee Nation, and we are proud that more of our youth will be encouraged to dream big and reach their full, God-given potential,” said Cherokee Nation Principal Chief Bill John Baker. “This expansion will positively touch the lives of so many of our citizens, and we created new, quality jobs in the process.”
The 19,000-square-foot center quadrupled the size of the former center built in 1969. Eight classrooms and four age-appropriate playgrounds are just a few of the center’s major features.
The Stilwell center opened its doors in 1995. Cherokee Nation owns and operates an additional center in Tahlequah. The two centers are licensed by the Oklahoma Department of Human Services.
“Research shows the most important time for brain development is between birth and age four. The Cherokee Nation Child Development Center in Stilwell is dedicated to making the most of this significant time in a child’s life,” said Director Tricia Peoples. “The completion of the new Stilwell Child Development Center shows the Cherokee Nation’s commitment to children and early learning.”
Indian-owned Red Stone Construction, of Tulsa, completed the project.
For more information about the Stilwell Child Development Center, call 918-696-3222.
Cherokee Nation News Release
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