Autism Friendly Santa Photo-shoot

Amy Tang
By Amy Tang
November 27, 2018US News

Christmas is coming, and for many children, it’s time to take a photo with Santa.

However, for some, the experience can be a little overwhelming.

An Arizona Mall, Park West, is trying to change that by providing a special Santa experience designed for children with autism.

“We try to create a winter wonderland for all the kids in the community and so they can come and get in line, and they can take pictures with Santa, and parents can order pictures and bring them home,” says John Yee from Park West Mall.

Organizations such as Autism Speaks also helped to make it happen.

“Going to the mall, having all the chaos and the lines—it’s hard for any kid, but especially a kid with special needs, it’s a little bit more difficult,” says Kerri Mallory-Thompson from Autism Speaks.

“The chaos, the lights, the music, … it’s very overwhelming for kids, so having this opportunity, you know, for the one-on-one calm, quiet, experience for the kids, it’s absolutely amazing, and it’s much needed here in the West Valley and all over the state,” says Mallory-Thompson.

ntd newsletter icon
Sign up for NTD Daily
What you need to know, summarized in one email.
Stay informed with accurate news you can trust.
By registering for the newsletter, you agree to the Privacy Policy.