Signing Santa at Dolphin Mall Gets Wish Lists From Deaf Children

For those in the hearing world, the holiday season is filled with joyous music, beautiful sounds and wishes for things special.

But for children who can't hear, they often miss out on some of the magic, unless they get to sit on the lap of Santa, who communicates in their language.

At a special celebration on Dec. 8, Christmas wishes were signed directly to Santa at the Dolphin Mall, so deaf and hearing impaired children knew firsthand that Santa got their toy lists.

"We have the hearing world and we have the deaf world and they are not the same. The deaf people, they will miss a lot of what's going on in the hearing world, songs and things like that," Santa said.

In addition to listening to what the children want for Christmas and their dreams via sign language, Santa also had gifts in hand, ahead of Dec. 25.

"This is for you to be able to take home. You will be able to color it," Santa told one child, handing him coloring sheets.

"Any chance to see Santa Claus and especially to have a signing Santa to communicate for the children who can't communicate orally is very, very special," said Linda Nova with Miami-Dade Schools.

The children also snapped fun photos with Santa and got to play and make snow angels. Then Santa signed goodbye, at least until Christmas Eve when he delivers their toys and joys.

130 South Florida children were able to visit the signing Santa during the event, thanks to the organizers: Darlene Watson, Andy Altmann and Cheryl Mullininx.

The event was sponsored by Dolphin Mall and South Florida Deaf Recreation Association.

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