December 31, 2020
Family and youth-focused facility to provide safe place to learn and have fun.
Plummer, IDAHO – After years of planning and dreaming, Marimn Health officially opened the doors of the Coeur Center this week to excited kids and families on the Coeur d’Alene Indian Reservation.
“As a kid growing up here, we used to dream of a place like this. Our children have long needed a place where they can be themselves – somewhere they are safe to learn and grow and explore their interests and pick up new skills. Our children deserve a place that is dedicated to their future and to making their dreams come true. Today, we are so excited that we finally have that place in the Coeur Center,” said Chief Allan, Chairman of the Coeur d’Alene Tribe.
The Coeur Center was envisioned by Marimn Health and the Coeur d’Alene Tribe as a unique and progressive way of confronting the social determinants of health that impact the well-being of reservation youth. The Tribe is taking this unique approach with the goal of improving health outcomes by providing youth with earlier and better access to holisitic care, mental health support, and other needed resources.
“This is more than a building. Through the Coeur Center, we are looking to reduce health disparities and build brighter futures by giving our youth the programs and resources to increase the odds that they will succeed in school and overcome life’s challenges,” said Marimn Health CEO Helo Hancock. “We want to give our kids a leg up in the battle against addiction, depression, crime, and poverty that so many kids across the country are facing today. We are fortunate to be in a position to be able to take action and do something about it,” he added.
The Coeur Center is a 32,500 square foot facility built on 20 acres of land owned by the Coeur d’Alene Tribe. The state-of-the art facility includes ample outdoor recreation space in addition to the center itself. The complex was built in Worley, Idaho, where a significant percentage of youth growing up on the reservation live.
The Coeur Center includes:
- A family waterpark with a waterslide, indoor splash pad with zero depth entry, children’s play area, a lazy river, a basketball hoop, climbing wall, and aquatic fitness and group exercise space;
- Dedicated space for the Boys & Girls Club of the Coeur d’Alene Tribe to run programs including a science and technology center, teen center, art and culture room, and activity spaces;
- Indoor gymnasium
- A fitness area;
- Community meeting rooms;
- A medical exam room and office and exam room for behavioral health professionals;
- A small juice and coffee bar;
- Additional space to provide room for growth and future programs;
- An indoor kids’ play area;
- An outdoor sports area including a basketball court, softball and baseball fields, and combination soccer/football field that can double as powwow grounds;
- An outdoor playground for kids; and
- A pavilion and picnic area for the community.
Programs for the Boys & Girls Club of the Coeur d’Alene Tribe have already moved from the Marimn Health Wellness Center in Plummer to the Coeur Center, which has a wing of the building dedicated specifically to Boys & Girls Club programs and participants. Marimn Health and the Boys & Girls Club of the Coeur d’Alene Tribe will help coordinate transportation to and from other reservation communities to youth who are participating in programs at the Coeur Center.
“We are investing in the future of the Tribe and the future of the region by giving our kids the greatest gift we can – the chance to lead healthy and fulfilled lives,” said Coeur d’Alene Tribal Health Authority Board Chairman Matt Stensgar.
The community can use the natatorium, gymnasium, indoor kids play area, fitness equipment, juice bar, and, come spring, outdoor spaces. Additionally, the Coeur Center has 2 classroom spaces that are available for community use. Due to the COVID-19 pandemic, reservations will be required for all use in order to limit capacity and prevent the spread of the virus. Additionally, masks are required inside of the building to protect the community, consistent with the Coeur d’Alene Tribe’s reservation-wide mask mandate.
The building was designed by NAC Architects and built by Bouten Construction of Spokane, WA. The facility is on tribally-owned land adjacent to Highway 95 near Worley, Idaho. The project cost approximately $19 million. Marimn Health secured roughly $4 million through the federal New Market Tax Credit program to help offset the costs of construction. The balance of the project was paid for directly by Marimn Health.
As a result of the COVID-19 pandemic, no grand opening ceremonies are planned at this time. Marimn Health hopes to plan a community celebration in 2021 if and when conditions will allow.
For more information about the Coeur Center, visit Marimn Health’s website at www.marimnhealth.org/youth-center. To reserve a time slot to use the Coeur Center, community members can call 208-686-5437.
The Coeur d’Alene Tribe and Marimn Health have a history of progressive solutions that serve the greater community – the Marimn Health Medical Center, which opened in 1990, was the first tribal health facility in the nation to partner with HHS to open its services to both native and non-native patients. The Wellness Center, built in 1998, serves both tribal and non-tribal community members and helps members build a healthy and positive lifestyle through fitness and physical activity. In keeping with the Tribe’s generous spirit, the Marimn Health Coeur Center and the Boys & Girls Club of the Coeur d’Alene Tribe will be open to all youth and families in the community, native and non-native alike.