By Lani Hansen, Senior Reporter
HENRYETTA, Oklahoma– The Muscogee (Creek) Nation Reintegration Program received funds to help better services and began a building project.
The funding came from the Department of Justice, they received a grant that will be used in two different purpose areas. Purpose area three grant will be used for case management services and behavior health services. The funds spent will be for clients and sending them to rehab.
“If the clients who come through our office don’t have anywhere to stay or they can’t pass the drug test, we’ll give them the option to go into rehab,” Outreach Specialist Mark Harjo said. “Or if we have someone who has been in the program a little while and they go away for a weekend, when they come back they have to take a drug test and if they fail we send them to rehab.”
Sending their clients to rehab is the main reason reintegration went after the grant, and utilizing behavior health services. They use MCN behavior health currently and will continue to use it as much as they can, but sometimes they may use other outside resources.
“We will also utilize this grant in helping citizens pay for drug court fees,” Harjo added.
Drug tests costs every time a citizen goes in to take it, which could be four to six times a week and may cost up to a couple hundred dollars. They also add on paying for monthly fees, which could get expensive according to Harjo.
“Like I said that is why we’re going to use that grant for that purpose area to utilize case management services,” Harjo said. “It’s very broad, we don’t have specific detail on what it can and can’t be used for so we just left it open.”
Some of the reasons they left the grant open is to help clients get their birth certificates, state ID, driver’s license, reinstatement fees and help with finding their clients a job.
Citizens who wish to receive help from the Reintegration Program must be enrolled Muscogee (Creek), pass a drug screening, new criteria must have a negative result from COVID-19 test, no warrants out in any county, must have a felony conviction and reside in the MCN jurisdiction.
Harjo said numbers vary on how many clients they help a day, because they do receive phone calls from family members or those who are incarcerated. In Henryetta, the program has living facilities for their clients and right now due to the pandemic there are six clients who live in those facilities compared to the 25 they started with.
Harjo added they are looking to expand the facilities with the other part of the grant in purpose area four which will be utilized for construction. They plan on building a wellness center for their clients.
“The wellness center will be like a workout facility,” Harjo added. “It will have a half-court basketball court, there will be a weight room, a recreational room for a pool table and other games as well.”
For more information contact the Reintegration Program at 918-549-2620.