BALTIMORE - Staff at Kennedy Krieger Institute created a special place inside where families can find a little holiday cheer during a stressful time.
They created a place called "Snowasis" to help make their holidays a little bit brighter.
"You never imagine being in the hospital with your child much less during the holiday season and picking out a holiday gift," said Jaime Kurman, Director of the Office of Patient and Community Engagement at Kennedy Krieger Institute. "Wrapping and shopping is the last thing on your mind and not a priority so we bring that experience to the families."
"Snowasis" is a free holiday shopping experience at Kennedy Krieger Institute for families that have to spend the holidays in the hospital.
Kurman said each year community organizations, businesses and people across the country give thousands of new toys to the institute.
"With those in the community we're able to stock a whole room and families can come in and shop for free and pick out whatever they need for their child for their siblings," Kurman said.
Staff set up the toys in a room they transformed into a "Snowasis" to create a special shopping experience tailored to each family so they can shop for their loved ones without having to leave the hospital.
"It really allows them during this time of year that can be very challenging and difficult to have a space to kind of help recreate that holiday experience for them," said Lauren Mahoney, Child Life and Therapeutic Recreation Manager at Kennedy Krieger Institute.
Parents and caregivers can browse through the selection of all the most popular toys and gadgets.
It's one less thing for families to worry about this holiday season.
"To know that we've taken that weight off their shoulders and seeing that is unbelievable," Kurman said. "It makes it worth all the hard work that we do."
You can visit kennedykrieger.org to learn more about how you can donate.
for more features.