Santa visits young Summit County kids with developmental challenges |

Santa visits young Summit County kids with developmental challenges

The Summit County Health Department was the site of a special Christmas party last week as the early intervention program held its second annual celebration Wednesday.

The program helps children from infants to 3-year-olds who have disabilities, the program’s director Jackie Swan said.

Over the years, the program has grown immensely, Swan said, and they’re trying to expand to do more events in the community.

On Wednesday about 100 people attended the party, including grandparents, parents, siblings, aunts and uncles, she said.

She added that it’s important that kids with developmental challenges are able to interact with others outside their home.

“Kids need to have social skills, need to interact with the real world,” Swan said.

Santa was on hand in a quiet atmosphere where kids could take all the time they needed to get comfortable before saying hello, she said, and there were activities and food for the guests.

The program features an occupational therapist, a speech therapist, a physical therapist and a nurse, Swan said. Much of the funding comes from the state.

Swan said they are planning a picnic in the spring.

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