For families in Saint Luke's Hospital of Kansas City's Neonatal Intensive Care Unit, the holiday season can be especially hard. The families may not be able to celebrate the way they may have imagined. Without the opportunity to go take them to visit Santa, Saint Luke’s and March of Dimes help bring normalcy to the holidays and bring joy in celebrating the milestone of their baby’s first holiday. Saint Luke's Security Sergeant, Anthony Cook, is proud to volunteer and be a part of this tradition for the sixth year.
Anthony knows all too well the ups and downs that life in the NICU can bring. His daughter, now 31 with two children of her own, spent ten days in Saint Luke's NICU.
“Being at the hospital is stressful when you can’t take your child home and you don’t know how long it’s going to be here,” Anthony said.
Volunterring and being a part of giving these families the precious moments of their first photo with Santa is one of Anthony's favorite things.
March of Dimes and Saint Luke's volunteers handmade individual outfits for the babies, as the "gifts" that they are to those around them. The parents also received a special footprint keepsake, an ornament with a ribbon as the length of their baby to remember how tiny they used to be, a holiday book, and Carter's donated cute "My first visit from Santa" outfits for all the babies.
Watch FOX4's coverage of Santa visiting the babies.
Watch KSHB's coverage of Santa posing for photos.