TULSA — The Osage Nation Women, Infants, and Children Program broke ground last week in north Tulsa and received an award from the USDA/Food Nutrition Service.

At the ceremony were Osage Nation Principal Chief Geoffrey Standing Bear, Osage Nation Congress members Alice Buffalohead and Otto Hamilton and Bruce Cass, Osage Nation Tribal Development Director. TriArch architects and Builders Unlimited also were present as the project contractors. Herman Lookout, Osage Nation Language Program Director opened the ceremony with an Osage prayer.

Osage Nation WIC Program Director Manon Taylor says the new clinic offers mothers and their children additional resources and services in a more convenient location.

“At the previous location, mothers and their children sometimes had to walk several hundred feet just to get to our front door,” says Taylor. “Now, we are located across the street from the former location with much easier access in and out of the clinic.”

The 3,000 square feet clinic will offer families a place to find resources such as breastfeeding and nutrition tips in a more efficiently designed space to provide even better customer service. For example, the non-commercial kitchen will prepare recipes using WIC foods and offer samples to families encouraging creative and inventive ways to prepare meals at home. The clinic will also have a dedicated play area inside lobby and reception.

“We want families to feel comfortable and we want our staff to feel empowered to provide the best customer service to our families,” said Taylor. “We are so grateful to Principal Chief Standing Bear and the entire Osage Nation staff for their support of our program and its impact on families.”

In addition to the new clinic, the Osage Nation WIC Program received the Gold Award from the USDA/Food Nutrition Service. Victor Agosto, Program Specialist, USDA/Food Nutrition Service southwest region presented the award to Donna Patterson, Osage Nation WIC Breastfeeding/Training Supervisor and acknowledged the Osage Nation WIC staff for their dedication and “loving support” for making breastfeeding work.

For more information about the Osage Nation WIC program, visit https://www.osagenation-nsn.gov/what-we-do/wic-department.

— Osage Nation