Precious photos show Santa visiting babies in NICU at Akron Children’s Hospital

AKRON, Ohio — Spreading Christmas love and joy to sweet babies and their families at Akron Children’s Hospital.

In a Facebook post, the hospital said Santa made the holiday season much brighter for 66 families and their precious babies in the hospital’s newborn intensive care unit (NICU).

The touching photos are courtesy of Simon Says Smile, a volunteer program provided by Black Dog Photo Co., and started by Ashley Smas and Molly Conger.

The program was started as a result of Molly’s son, Simon. Molly says he spent 82 days in Akron Children’s NICU due to an esophageal atresia and prematurity.  Simon is now a happy and health 5-year-old.

“When your child is in the NICU you don’t have the opportunity to get regular hospital photos as you would at an adult hospital. I treasure the photos they [Black Dog Photo Co.] took for us that day and wanted to share that gift with others in the same situation,” Molly told FOX 8.

Ashley, with Black Dog Photo Co., told FOX 8 they volunteer a few times a month by going into the NICU to provide complimentary lifestyle portrait sessions for families.

In the photos, you see Santa bonding with the babies, many of whom are wearing their Christmas best. Some of the precious newborns look like Old Saint Nick’s little twin with their Santa hats.

**Simon Says Smile & Black Dog Photo Co. shared the beautiful photos with FOX 8; you can see them in the gallery, above**