The project is a new 51,000 sq. ft. health clinic and recreation center (Wellness Center) focused on increasing the life expectancy for tribal members. Life expectancy for a tribal member is 59 years vs. 78.5 years for the rest of Montana. After years of community input, public meeting and capital raising, the project was made a reality with the help of New Markets Tax Credits. Construction on a $23 million Wellness Center on the Fort Peck Reservation in Poplar, Montana is underway and scheduled for completion in 2022.
Once completed, the new Wellness Center will create 70 new full-time (FTE) jobs to be filled by low-income residents and will address life expectancy discrepancies in Montana. The life expectancy of a typical Montana resident is 78.5 years whereas the life expectancy of a Fort Peck resident is 59 years. The 50,000 sq. ft. Wellness Center will address this disparity by offering medical, dental, and therapy rooms, including telehealth rooms for patients and offices for providers. The Center will also house a gym, a pool, a childcare center, and a space for cultural programs.
After a standstill due to budgeting concerns, progress is being made once again thanks to financing from the two Fort Peck tribes-the Assiniboine and the Sioux-and the NMTC Program. NMTC financing was provided by CDE MoFi.