Who says kids can only sit on Santa's lap during the holidays?

Photos of a mall Santa on his hands and knees playing with an autistic boy have given goose bumps to the internet.

Last week, at the SouthPark mall in Charlotte, NC, six-year-old Brayden enjoyed some fun with Santa:

Brayden got to play as part of an event called Caring Santa, an effort put together by the group Autism Speaks "that provides special needs families with their own unique opportunity to visit and take photos with Santa."

Autism Speaks

Branden's mother, Erin Deely, was blown away by how successful the event was. "Oh my gosh, to be able to do something that other families do...normally a lot of things are harder for us as a family and we got to do the same tradition as everyone else, we just do it on the floor," she told People.

And she has nothing but high praise for the fellow who played Santa, noting, "I just want to hug this man. He's so wonderful!"

Autism Speaks