Showing Sanford Children that Disabilities Won’t Stop Them From Enjoying the Holidays

It's perfect to be able to do this without the crowding of the mall

FARGO, ND — For families that have a child with disabilities, getting in and out of the mall to shop or take a picture with Santa is not always easy.

Those at Sanford know the toll it takes on these families.

For some, the hectic holiday season can be enjoyable.

For others, the hustle and bustle can take away some of the holiday spirit.

“With a lot of commotion and a lot of crowds, It’s not the best environment for these kids,” said Jane Standal, a Sanford Pediatric Health Coach.

“It’s perfect to be able to do this without the crowding of the mall,” said Lisa Wainscotteira, a mother whose child has disabilities.

Sanford Children’s Medical home patients got to the mall a little early for a special day of fun.

“It’s so rewarding just to see them having fun and just being kids,” Jane said.

Lisa is just one of the many parents whose child has a disability.

“Makes me a little teared up thinking about it because this time last year we didn’t even know if she was going to be with us,” Lisa said.

Being able to partake in this year’s holiday event meant the world to her family.

“It makes it that much more special, that much more important to be able to do this, this year,” Lisa said.

Sanford wants to give these kids a chance to enjoy the magic of the holidays.

“They just need a little extra and that’s what we’re here to provide for them. These kids are wonderful, they have special needs and it makes them unique little people but they’re just great,” Jane said.

They got to see some friendly faces…

“A time to see us that isn’t in the clinic, isn’t possibly in a stressful situation,” Jane said.

…share their wishes with the big guy in red.

“It’s so rewarding just to see them having fun and just being kids,” Jane said.

…and be reminded that their disabilities won’t stop them from taking in all the holiday traditions.

“Every kid is unique. Every one of them is different. They all have their own little quirks, their own special things about them but we’re all just the same,” Lisa said.

Many of the parents say this time of year is stressful but having their young ones at events like these make it all worth it.

“They teach you so much about patience and love and true empathy and care and it’s amazing. These kids are amazing. Yes you are, you’re wonderful. Yes, you are,” Lisa said.

Many of the families say this event changed their outlook on the holidays and they are grateful for the family Sanford has given them.

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