DAYTON, Ohio (WDTN) — For kids at Dayton Children’s Hospital, Santa Claus made an early appearance.

The Santa’s Gift Program is entering its 27th year. For more than two decades, their main goal has remained the same: To make sure children know that they are loved.

Each child at the Dayton Children’s Hospital is battling a serious illness of their own. Every year, organizers of Santa’s Gift find special ways to bring cheer to sick kids, providing comfort and hope during the holiday season.

“Today we’re at Dayton Children’s with Santa Claus to hand out teddy bears and take photos of the kids with Santa,” Madeline Geiger of the Reynolds and Reynolds Associate Foundation said. “And bring a little cheer to the hospital.”

Santa Claus visited nearly 150 at the hospital with a special gift for each patient. Organizers say there is no better time than now to show warmth and care to families in their time of need.

“It can be a really fun time of the year, but it can also be a hard time of the year,” Geiger said. “So, any little bit of joy that we can bring, we are more than happy to give our time to come out and do that.”

The nonprofit is made possible by the fundraising from the Reynolds and Reynolds Associate Foundation. More information about the foundation can be found here.