Feeding community focus of Tri-Community W.E.B. group

BY CHAD HUNTER
Reporter
09/07/2020 10:00 AM
Audio Clip
Main Cherokee Phoenix
Carol Robbins, right, and Stephanie Sellers prepare meals June 3 at the Welling, Eldon, Briggs Community Center. The homemade meals are offered for $2 from 11 a.m. to 1 p.m. Mondays, Wednesdays and Fridays. CHAD HUNTER/CHEROKEE PHOENIX
Main Cherokee Phoenix
Vehicles line up on June 3 for take-out meals at the Welling, Eldon, Briggs Community Center. The Tri-Community W.E.B. Association has been operating out of its Briggs community building in partnership with the Cherokee Nation since 2016. COURTESY
BRIGGS – A community group based in Briggs offers low-cost, homemade meals to Cherokee elders and others three days a week.

The nonprofit Tri-Community W.E.B. Association, which serves Welling, Eldon and Briggs, has been operating out of its community building in partnership with the Cherokee Nation since 2016.

“We’ve got people coming through now that didn’t know we were feeding meals,” J.R. Sellers, association president and CN citizen, said. “They found out that they can get a to-go meal, and we’re getting tons of compliments on our meals.”

The homemade meals are offered for $2 from 11 a.m. to 1 p.m. Mondays, Wednesdays and Fridays.

“Everybody’s welcome,” Sellers said. “All you’ve got to do is get in line. We don’t turn anybody down. We’ve got a good facility to do it.”

A majority of the lunch-goers are elders. According to the association’s records, of the 1,525 meals served in May, an estimated 1,400 went to senior citizens.

“As humans, we can learn a great deal from our elders, and there’s quite a pool of elders here,” W.E.B. Association volunteer Dustin Spears said.

Meals are made in the community center’s kitchen. Costs are partially offset by funding from the Eastern Oklahoma Development District.

“We fed 160 people turkey and dressing yesterday,” Sellers said. “So you’re talking six to eight, maybe nine, 10 turkeys. And that’s just the turkey part.”

Due to the COVID-19 pandemic, as of press time, the W.E.B. Association was offering meals only for pick-up at the center. In addition to its public lunch program, the association offers a mobile pantry and periodically hands out boxed food for families at the center, thanks to the CN and local farmers.

“We’ve been busy, busy, busy passing out food boxes like crazy,” Sellers said June 3 as communities were slowly reopening from the pandemic lockdown. “We passed out 480 boxes just yesterday. It’s just been a busy time for us. We felt real good about it because we’ve been able to give a lot of people food, and Cherokee Nation’s been a big help.”

The community building is on land donated by Sellers and his wife, Pam.

“We built this from the ground up for the communities,” said Sellers, who owns an auction business next door.

All board members, employees and volunteers with the association are Cherokee, he said. The community center’s partnership with the tribe is thriving under the latest administration, he added.

“I think they’re really trying to help people,” he said. “I’m real happy with Cherokee Nation.”

The center is at 17914 S. 580 Road. For information, visit its Facebook page or call 918-931-9371.
ᏣᎳᎩ

ᎠᏥᎾ ᏗᏡᎬᎢ – ᎾᏍᎩ ᏍᎦᏚᎩ ᎤᎾᏓᏡᎩ ᎥᎿ ᎠᏥᏃᎢ ᎦᏲᏟ ᏧᎬᏩᏗ , ᎠᎵᏍᏓᏰᏗ ᎨᎨᎳᏍᏗᎲᎢ ᎠᏂᏣᎳᎩ ᎤᎾᏓᏂᎵᎨᎢ ᎠᎴ ᎠᏂᏐᎢ ᏦᎢ ᎢᎦ ᏒᎾᏙᏓᏆᏍᏗ ᏳᏓᎵ. 
ᎾᏍᎩᏃ ᏦᎢ ᎢᏯᏍᎦᏚᎩ W.E.B. ᎤᎾᏓᏡᎩ, ᎾᏍᎩ ᏕᎨᏥᏯᏙᎯᎲᎢ ᎥᎿ ᏪᎵᏂᎢ, ᎡᎵᏗᏂ ᎠᎴ ᎠᏥᏃᎢ, ᎾᏍᎩᏃ ᏚᏂᎸᏫᏍᏓᏁᎲᎢ ᎥᎿ ᏍᎦᏚᎩ ᎤᎾᏓᏁᎸᎢ ᎾᏍᎩ ᏚᎾᎵᎪᏒᎢ ᏣᎳᎩᎯ ᎠᏰᎵ 2016 ᏂᏛᏓᎴᏂᏍᎩ. 
“ᎾᏍᎩᏃ ᎠᏂᏏᏴᏫᏲ ᎠᏂᎶᏍᎦ ᎥᏝ ᏳᎾᏂᏖᎢ ᏙᏤᏠᎲᎢ ᎤᏂᏣᏘ,” J.R. Sellers, ᎤᎾᏓᏡᎬᎢ ᏄᎬᏫᏳᏒᎢ ᎠᎴ CN ᎨᎳ, ᎧᏃᎮᏍᎬᎢ. “ᎾᏍᎩ ᎤᎾᏕᎶᎰᏎᎢ ᎾᏍᎩ ᏰᎵ ᎬᏩᏂᎩᏍᏗ ᎤᎾᎵᏍᏓᏰᏗ ᎤᏂᏫᏛᏗ, ᎠᎴ ᎣᏍᏓ ᎠᏂᏰᎸᏍᎩ ᏄᏍᏛᎢ ᎠᎵᏍᏓᏰᏗ.” 
ᎾᏍᎩᏃ ᎠᎵᏍᏓᏰᏗ $2 ᏧᎬᏩᎶᏗ 11 a.m. ᎠᏟᎠᎵᏒᎢ ᏂᏗᎬᏓᎴᏂᏍᎩ 1 p.m. ᏱᎪᎯᏓ ᎤᎾᏙᏓᏉᏅᎢ, ᏦᎢᏁ ᎢᎦ ᎠᎴ ᏧᎾᎩᎶᏍᏗ ᏱᎪᎯᏓ.
“ᎾᏂᎥᎢ ᏕᎨᎦᏓᏂᎸᎩ,” ᎠᏗᏍᎬᎢ Sellers. “ᏤᎳᏗᏍᏗᏊ ᎤᎾᏓᏅᏅᎢ. ᎥᏝ ᎩᎶᎢ ᏄᎩᏓ ᏱᎩ. ᎣᏍᏓᏃ ᎣᎦᏓᏁᎳ ᎾᏍᎩ ᏱᎦᏲᎦᏛᏁᏗ.” 
ᎾᏍᎩ ᎤᏂᏣᏘ ᎠᏁᏙᎯ ᏧᎾᏔᎾᏯᎢ. ᎾᏍᎩ ᏄᏍᏛᎢ ᎪᏪᎵ ᏕᎦᏅᎢ, ᎾᏃ 1,525 ᏱᎦᎢ ᎤᏂᏯᏙᏢᎢ ᎠᏂᏍᎬᏘ ᏥᎧᎸᎢ, ᎾᏍᎩᏃ ᎠᏎᏢᎢ 1,400 ᏧᎾᏔᎾᏯᎢ ᎤᎾᎵᏍᏕᎸᏙᏔᏅᎢ. 
“ᎾᏍᎩ ᎢᏗᏏᏴᏫᎭ, ᏱᏓᏕᏠᎦ ᏄᏍᏛᎢ ᎤᎾᏂᏛᎢ ᏧᎾᏔᎾ, ᎠᎴ ᎾᏍᎩ ᎤᏂᏣᏘ ᎠᏂᎦᏴᎵ ᎠᏁᏙᎰᎢ ᎠᎭᏂ,” W.E.B. ᎠᏗᏍᎬᎢ Dustin Spears ᎾᏍᎩ ᎠᎵᏍᏕᎵᏍᎩ.
ᎠᎵᏍᏓᏰᏗ’Ꮓ ᎥᎿᏊ ᏍᎦᏚᎩ ᎠᏰᎵ ᎤᏙᏢᏒᎢ ᎥᎿᏃ ᎠᎾᏓᏍᏓᏴᎲᏍᎪᎢ. ᎾᏍᎩᏃ ᏚᏴᏩᎶᏛᎢ ᎾᏍᎩ ᎠᏂᏍᏓᏩᏗ ᎧᎸᎬᎢ ᎣᎦᎳᎰᎹ ᎤᏙᎷᏩᏛᏗᎢ ᏍᎦᏚᎩ. 
ᎾᏍᎩ 160 ᎢᏯᏂᎢ ᎬᎾ ᎠᎴ ᎬᏫᏍᏔᏅᎢ ᏙᏤᏝᎸᎢ ᏒᎯ ᏥᎨᏒᎢ,” ᎠᏗᏍᎬᎢ Sellers. “ᏯᏛᎾᏃ ᏑᏓᎵ, ᏧᏁᎳ, ᏰᎵᏃ ᏐᏁᎳ, 10Ꭿ ᏱᎦᎢ ᎬᎾ ᎬᏗ. ᎠᎴ ᎾᏍᎩᏭ ᎬᎾ ᏥᎩ.”
ᎾᏍᎩᏃ COVID-19 ᎥᏳᎩ ᏣᎯᎵᏙᎠ, ᎠᏟᎠᎵᏒᏃ, ᎾᏍᎩ W.E.B. ᎤᏙᏢᏒᏃ ᎾᏍᎩ ᏩᎩᏍᏗᏭ ᎨᏒᎢ ᎥᎿ ᎠᏰᎵ ᏧᏙᏢᏒᎢ. ᎬᏩᏠᏯᏍᏗᏃ ᎠᏰᎵᎢ ᎤᏙᏢᏒᎢ ᏓᏁᏠᎲᎢ, ᎾᏍᎩ ᎤᏙᏢᏒᎢ ᎠᎵᏍᎪᏟᏗᎭ ᎠᏓᏅᏏᏙᎯ ᎠᎵᏍᏓᏰᏗ ᎠᎴ ᏳᏓᎵ ᏓᎾᏓᏕ ᏗᎧᏁᏌᎢ ᎠᎵᏍᏓᏰᏗ ᎦᏟᏗᏓᏅᎢ ᎠᏂᏏᏓᏁᎸᎢ ᏓᏁᏙᎲᎢ ᎥᎿ ᎠᏰᎵ ᎤᏙᎴᏒᎢ, ᏗᎵᎮᎵᏤᏗ ᎾᏍᎩ Ꮎ ᏣᎳᎩᎯ ᎠᏰᎵ ᎠᎴ ᎡᏍᎦᏂ ᎠᏁᎯ ᏗᏂᎶᎩᏍᎩ. 
“ᎢᎦᏃ ᏙᎩᎸᏫᏍᏓᏁᎲᎢ, ᏙᎩᎸᎳᏍᏓᏁᎲᎢ ᏗᎧᏁᏌᎢ ᎠᎵᏍᏓᏰᏗ ᎦᏟᏓᏅᎢ ᏙᏣᏓᏕᎲᎢ,” Sellers’Ꮓ ᎧᏃᎮᏍᎬᎢ ᏕᎭᎷᏱ 3Ꮑ ᏥᎨᏎᏍᏗ ᎾᏍᎩ ᎣᏥᏍᎦᏚᎩ ᎤᏍᎦᏃᎵ ᎬᎯᎸᏗ ᏓᎣᏥᏍᏚᎢᏏ ᏂᎬᏂᏏᏍᎩ ᎤᏍᎦᏎᏗ ᎥᏳᎩ ᏣᎯᎵᏙᎠ ᏍᏓᏱ ᏧᎾᎵᏍᏚᎭ. ᎾᏍᎩ 480 ᏱᎦᎢ ᏗᎧᏁᏌᎢ ᏙᎩᏯᏙᏢᎢ ᏒᎯ ᏥᎨᏒᎢ. ᎾᏍᎩᏃ ᏙᏳᎢ ᏙᎩᎸᏫᏍᏓᏁᎲᎢ . ᎢᎦᏃ ᎣᏍᏓ ᎣᎩᏰᎸᏒᎢ ᏙᏥᏁᎲᎢ ᎤᏂᏣᏘ ᎤᎾᎵᏍᏓᏰᏗ, ᎠᎴ ᏣᎳᎩᎯ ᎠᏰᎵ ᏭᏓᎪᎾᏛᎢ ᎣᎩᏍᏕᎸᎲᎢ.” 
ᎾᏍᎩᏃ ᏍᎦᏚᎩ ᎦᎵᏦᏕ ᎥᎿ ᏣᏓᏁᎳ Sellers ᎠᎴ ᎤᏓᎵᎢ, Pam ᎤᎾᎵᏍᎪᏟᏔᏅᎢ ᎦᏙᎢ .
“ᎾᏍᎩᏃ ᎠᎦᏁᏍᎨᎲᎢ ᎾᏍᎩ ᏗᏍᎦᏚᎩ ᎤᎾᎵᏍᏕᎸᏙᏗ,” ᎠᏗᏍᎬᎢ Sellers, ᎾᏍᎩᏃ ᏍᏊ ᎤᏤᎵᎢ ᏣᏓᎾᎾ ᏐᎢ ᏗᏓᏁᎸ ᎥᎿ. 
ᏂᎦᏓ ᎠᏂᏁᏥᏙᎯ ᎠᏁᎳ, ᏧᏂᎸᏫᏍᏓᏁᎯ ᎠᎴ ᎠᎾᎵᏍᏕᎵᏍᎩ ᎾᏍᎩ ᏧᎾᏓᏡᎩ ᎠᏂᏣᎳᎩ, ᎠᏗᏍᎬᎢ. ᎾᏍᎩᏃ ᏍᎦᏚᎩ ᎠᏰᎵ ᎤᏙᏢᏒᎢ ᎠᏂᏅᏍᏓᏢᎢ ᏚᎾᎵᎪᎭ ᎾᏍᎩ ᎠᏂᎯᎵ ᎣᏂ ᏥᎩ ᏄᏂᎬᏳᏒᎢ, ᎾᏍᎩ ᎠᏠᏯᏍᏗᎭ ᎧᏁᎬᎢ. 
“ᎾᏍᎩᏃ ᏂᎨᎵᎠ ᏙᏳᎢ ᎤᏂᏰᎸᎢ ᏴᏫ ᏓᏂᏕᎵᏍᎬᎢ,” ᎠᏗᏍᎬᎢ. “ᏙᏳᎢ ᎦᏥᎵᎮᎵᏤᎭ ᏣᎳᎩᎯ ᎠᏰᎵ.” 
ᎾᏍᎩᏃ ᎤᏙᏢᏒᎢ ᏧᏙᏢᎭ 17914 ᎤᎦᏅᏮ. 580 ᎦᏅᏅᎢ. ᏲᏚᎵᎭ ᎠᏕᎶᎰᎯᏍᏗᎢ, ᎠᎪᎵᏰᏗ ᎪᏪᎵᎤᎧᏛᎢ ᎤᎦᏅᏓᏛᎢ ᎠᎴᏱᎩ ᏩᏟᏃᎮᏗ 918-931-9371.

– TRANSLATED BY DAVID CRAWLER

About the Author
Chad Hunter has spent more than two decades in the newspaper industry as a reporter and editor in Arkansas, Oklahoma and his home state of Missouri. He began working for the Cherokee Phoenix in late  ...
chad-hunter@cherokee.org • 918-453-5269
Chad Hunter has spent more than two decades in the newspaper industry as a reporter and editor in Arkansas, Oklahoma and his home state of Missouri. He began working for the Cherokee Phoenix in late ...

News

BY STAFF REPORTS
09/28/2020 03:33 PM
OKLAHOMA CITY – The Oklahoma State Department of Health’s data on its website showed Monday the state’s...

BY ASSOCIATED PRESS
09/28/2020 02:12 PM
Tribal officials worry how elders and others who don’t h...

BY ASSOCIATED PRESS
09/28/2020 10:29 AM
Such a corporation doesn’t qualify as a tribe under federal law unless it ...

BY D. SEAN ROWLEY
Senior Reporter
09/28/2020 08:16 AM
Four Native Americans cur...

BY ASSOCIATED PRESS
09/25/2020 04:29 PM
FARGO, N.D. (AP) – A bill named for a Fargo murder victim to...

BY STAFF REPORTS
09/25/2020 04:25 PM
OKLAHOMA CITY – The Oklahoma State Department of Health’s data on its website showed Friday the state’...