Twenty-five children from 11 countries took their oaths of allegiance today at Gathering Place in Tulsa’s first child citizenship ceremony.
Countries represented include Burma, Egypt, Lebanon, Lesotho, Malaysia, Mexico, Nigeria, Pakistan, Thailand, United Arab Emirates, and Ukraine.
“Each of these kids is a historic figure - in their family and in our city,” Mayor G.T. Bynum said. “I’m thankful we could congratulate them on becoming American citizens at the greatest city park in America - the Gathering Place - which embodies the promise that Tulsa and America offer to them and future generations of their family.”
Today’s ceremony took place at the PSO Reading Tree, which is significant because of the reading challenge that took place there and for its lasting impact on Tulsa through its educational programming events and weekly story times.
"It's an honor for Gathering Place to be part of such a significant moment in these kids' lives," said Andrea Leitch, Vice President of Marketing at Gathering Place. "Education is at the core of our weekly programming because we believe that every child deserves an equal opportunity to quality education experiences, so we look forward to welcoming these kids and their families to the Park for years to come."
Because of the Child Citizenship Act of 2000, the majority of the children who became citizens in the ceremony derived U.S. Citizenship by the action of their parent(s) naturalizing while they were under the age of 18.
The City would like to thank the following program participants and volunteers for their role in the ceremony: