“Sensory-Friendly” back to school shopping held in Holyoke

The event is also held during Christmas season

HOLYOKE, Mass. (WWLP) – The Holyoke Mall took a step toward making the mall more inclusive and welcoming for children with special needs.

The mall hosted a “Sensory-Friendly” back to school shopping night. With all the noise lights and people, the mall can be a difficult environment for people with autism.

According to Sarah Hunter of Community Resource for People with Autism, “It can be really hard for people with autism to come to the mall, and to participate in this part of their community. So it’s really cool that the mall has decided to turn the lights down, turn the music down, and make it a better place for families with kids with autism to be.”

Hunter said the mall hosts a “Sensory-Friendly Santa Claus” during the Christmas season. Kids can have quiet time with Santa and not wait in line.

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