Father Shane Doty, two-year-old Ariah, and mom Melissa, were among those who got their picture taken with Sensitive Santa at Tillicum Centre in 2017. (Wolf Depner/News Staff)

Sensitive Santa brings patient holiday cheer to Tillicum Centre

Those who need more time with Santa can book a session ahead starting Nov. 19

Taking a photo with a mall Santa is a tradition for many, but it often requires a long wait in a crowded line up and a rushed moment with Mr. Claus. These circumstances can be a barrier for some and the Sensitive Santa initiative at Tillicum Centre provides an alternative.

Rebekah Kasper, spokesperson for Tillicum Centre, explained that the Sensitive Santa initiative is “meant for people who need quieter time with Santa.”

READ ALSO: Help Cedar Hill Middle School students make a difference in Guatemala this Christmas

People can pre-book 10-minute sessions with jolly old Saint Nick between 11 a.m and noon on Sunday Dec. 1, 8 and 15 as the mall staff understand that long lines and crowds can be very difficult for some.

Kasper emphasized that the bookings are reserved for those with autism, chronic illness and varying levels of abilities, not for skipping the long lines. The mall relies on the honour system as folks will not be asked to prove their need for time with Sensitive Santa.

The sessions aren’t rushed and include patient staff – Christmas elves and trained volunteers from Community Living Victoria will be there to help the families – and of course, a very patient Santa.

READ ALSO: ’Tis the season for holiday cheer with a Ken Lavigne Christmas

Sometimes Santa needs to wait a long time for the visitor to be ready for a photo as many are nervous and sometimes there are emotional moments to wait out, Kasper explained. Other times, no photo is taken at all as the visitor would prefer a conversation rather than a photo.

Kasper noted that everyone is welcome to come down to spend time with Santa regardless of their needs and age – there is no age cap for the sessions so anyone wanting to spend some time with Santa is welcome.

Sessions can be booked as of Nov. 19 by emailing rkasper@AnthemProperties.com and including Sensitive Santa in the subject line.


@devonscarlett
Like us on Facebook and follow us on Twitter.

devon.bidal@saanichnews.com

Get local stories you won't find anywhere else right to your inbox.
Sign up here

Just Posted

Six months to Francophone Games, 600 volunteers needed

Online applications open on Jan. 14

Tech consortium invests $25 million into four University of Victoria research projects

Investments come with goal of developing, implement technologies created by Canadians

Organizers seek input for long-awaited Oaklands community garden

Oswald Park Community Garden Design Workshop coming up on Jan. 19

Improperly transporting a pet in the back of the truck can cost up to $368

Police recommend keeping all animals inside the passenger portion of the vehicle

Mass-timber project in Esquimalt switches from condos to rentals

Corvette Landing will now offer rental units in the area

After cashing in on QB gambles, Chiefs and 49ers to clash in Super Bowl

KC beats Tennessee, San Francisco dispatches Green Bay to reach NFL title game

B.C. VIEWS: Few clouds on Horgan’s horizon

Horgan’s biggest challenge in the remainder of his term will be to keep the economy humming along

B.C. forest industry grasps for hope amid seven-month strike, shutdowns, changes

Some experts say this could be worse for forestry than the 2008 financial crisis

Northern B.C. RCMP investigating alleged sexual assault in downtown Smithers

One person was transported by ambulance to hospital following RCMP investigation at Sedaz

UBC, Iranian-Canadian community create memorial scholarship in honour of victims

The Jan. 8 crash killed 176 people, including 57 Canadians

Disrespectful that Horgan won’t meet during northern B.C. tour: hereditary chief

Na’moks said he was frustrated Horgan didn’t meet with the chiefs

Canucks extend home win streak to 8 with 4-1 triumph over Sharks

Victory lifts Vancouver into top spot in NHL’s Pacific Division

Most Read