Cheff Center: Augusta MI



Potential Students and Parents

Testimonial Tuesday: Meet Natalie

March 14, 2017

Natalie has been in hippo therapy at the Cheff Center for about 5 months. She started when she was just 14 months old. Hippo therapy was brought to our attention by a very respected specialist Natalie sees. She and other friends dealing with a similar diagnosis raved about the positive results possible from hippo, but we were not at all familiar with horses and were little apprehensive about putting our low toned little girl on one. Thankfully after some research we decided to give it a shot. Though the Cheff Center is an hour south, we felt it was worth the trip in order to get a certified physical therapist.

When Natalie started, she was just beginning to bear weight on her legs, she was crawling proficiently, had mastered sitting and made very few noises, none intentionally.

Now Natalie is 18 months and the progress she has made is remarkable. She stands independently for 30 seconds frequently, she can stand up in the middle of the floor, she can take a few steps, and she makes sounds intentionally, working toward words. I am certain hippo has helped her achieve all these things.

It is hard to explain the amount of work that it takes an 18-month-old to hold her body up on a horse. There is no other therapy where Natalie will work as hard and make the progress she has made at hippo therapy.

A few weeks ago, on a break for Christmas Natalie had 3 weeks off. She continued her other therapies but I could tell her core was not improving like it would have if she was still in hippo therapy. Sure enough after 2 or 3 sessions she took those first steps. I am definitely a believer and Natalie will continue with hippo for years to come! I am so grateful for Char and the Cheff Center.

~ Becca 

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Cheff News

Testimonial Tuesday: Meet Natalie

Everyone who comes to Cheff has a unique experience that oftentimes has far reaching effects.  Today, we'd like to highlight Natalie. 

Natalie is currently our youngest client at the Cheff Center- begining her journey at only 14 months.  Click the link below to read her mom's thoughts on the experience. 

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Birthday Blessings

Since 2005, volunteer extraordinaire Kathy Keelan Pew, has donated her birthday to the Cheff (Ride-a-Thon) - to the tune of nearly $15,000 ($2,475 in 2016 alone!)
Each year, Kathy requests that if her friends and family wish to do something for her in honor of her birthday, that they support her in our Ride-A-Thon.

Read more


What People Are Saying

The Cheff Center has given Emily great confidence and strength. The volunteers and staff are excellent! It’s such a joy to me to see how happy Emily is when she is riding.
- Cheff Parent

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