About Us

Children, Horses, Adults in PartnerShip

CHAPS was founded in August, 2003 and was originally established as a Therapeutic Riding Program to serve children and adults with special needs. We are a Premier Accredited Center with the Professional Association of Therapeutic Horsemanship International (PATH), a global authority and advocate for equine-assisted activities and therapies that inspire and enrich the human spirit. Over the years our program has expanded to offer therpeutic driving, Equine Facilitated Psychotherapy and Equine Assisted Learning. Our participants now include, not only individuals, but also groups of Veterans from the Sheridan VA Medical Center and at-Risk youth from Sheridan School District #2.

CHAPS also provides community service opportunities for non-violent offenders from the Sheridan County Justice System·

The benefits of human-horse interaction have been well known for many years. Equine Assisted Therapy or 'Horse Therapy' can be highly rewarding and works on several different levels. It can be a physical benefit, for example, riders can build core strength, increase flexibility and improve balance. On a mental-emotional level, working with the horses can help people achieve emotional growth and learning.

Our professional staff and volunteers work closely with riders to ensure safe riding sessions and increase a rider's confidence. A new rider is generally assisted by two side-walkers who walk alongside the horse, as well as a horse leader. CHAPS' instructors have a strong equine background, as well as an understanding of various disabilities.

Therapeutic ground-work sessions are a collaborative effort between a licensed clinical therapist and an equine professional who work directly with participants and the horses. By addressing challenges like leading a horse through a maze, or creating an obstacle that must be encountered and overcome, they get to see the new ways of coping in their own lives. Participants may relate these experiences to obstacles they are having in their own life and see they have the power to personal resources to effect change.



  • PTSD
  • Muscular Dystrophy
  • Multiple Sclerosis
  • Visual Impairment
  • Down Syndrome
  • Mental/Emotional Issues
  • Spinal Cord Injuries
  • Learning Disabilities
  • Autism
  • Cerebral Palsy
  • Developmental Delays