A STORY OF HOPE
"Hands That Give Hope" is the philosophy and the founding belief of The Rehabilitation Center for Neurological Development. This non-profit agency serves infants, children and adults who suffer from minimal to severe brain injury.
Ruth Hahn and Gloria Hufford believed that they could make a positive difference in the lives of their own children who suffered from brain injury by utilizing a Neurological Progam. However, there was no such facility in Ohio. They took matters into their own hands with the help of Charles Burhns, Sensory Motor Developmentalist and a dream became a reality.
In 1972, The Rehabilitation Center was founded. The Center was first housed in a temporary setting in the basement of St. Paul's Church in Piqua. The news of this successful program grew quickly, as did the demand for the service. Dimitri Nicholas of The Orr Felt Company was aware that additional space was desperately needed, so he generously donated the use of the facility located on South Main Street.
In 1976, the dream to have a school where all children could succeed became a reality. Nicholas School, a product of the Rehab Center, began serving special needs children. The school is a state chartered K-8 Special Needs school.
Both facilities served multitudes of clients from the surrounding communities and beyond for almost 30 years and the buildings were becoming "well-worn" and crowded. Thoughts of a new building that could house both facilities under one roof became the new dream.
In March of 2000, five acres of land were generously donated by an anonymous benefactor and the kick-off to start our capital campaign "Building a Legacy of Hope" occurred on April 19th, 2001. Our Ground-Breaking Ceremony was excitedly held in October of 2003 and less than a year later, the new dream was fulfilled by a dedication and open house of the beautiful new state-of-the-art facility in September of 2004.
In March of 2012, a special celebration was held in honor of the Center's 40th year. Co-Founder, Ruth Hahn was presented with a resolution on behalf of the members of the Ohio House of Representatives for the incredible milestone. Eighty-six year old Ruth shared her dream to all in attendance: to have the Center paid off before her life is done. She introduced the "Imagine If" campaign, challenging all who hear about it to contribute a minimum of $20 towards the fund, saying, "giving a little makes a lot."
It was a sad day for her Center family when Ruth Hahn, passed away on April 19, 2014 at the age of 88. Ruth proudly left her legacy with the Rehabiliation Center and Nicholas School that she and co-founder Gloria Hufford envisioned over 40 years ago! They would be so thrilled to know that the Nicholas School has it's largest student body in it's history, with 42 students this year! The Center has undergone remodeling to accommodate a growing and diversified client base, too. Our staff and board are determined to carry on the legacy of Hands That Give Hope!
In 2017, a newly constructed addition was opened to house our Adult Dahab Program. Nineteen full and part-time adults with developmental disabilities participate in non-work activities such as improving communication and mobility, improving individual self-advocacy skills, enhancing social skills and relationships, as well as improving the physical and emotional well-being of each individual. Our Adult Dayhab Program clients may participate in our aquatics program, neurofeedback service, group class activity, floor activities, as well as a variety of social interactive activities.
CELEBRATING 48 YEARS IN 2020!
Did you know...Throughout our four decades of existance, we have served 52 Ohio counties, 19 States and the countries of Russia and Africa!