1. ITV Report

'Syrian Santa' risks his life to smuggle toys to children

Rami Adham gives out a sack of toys he smuggled to Syria Credit: NBC News

A man is risking his life to bring joy to children in Syria by smuggling toys into the war-torn country.

Rami Adham, a Finnish-Syrian father-of-six, has become known as the "Aleppo toy smuggler".

Since civil war erupted in his homeland, Adham, 44, has travelled to Syria more than 28 times.

"Kids there have lost their childhood, and not for a year: This is the sixth year now and it seems like everybody forgot them," Adham told NBC News.

Miral Khalagi Credit: NBC News

Miral Khalagi lives in a refugee camp in the Syrian city of Idlib.

She was just four years old when soldiers broke into her family's home and tortured and killed her father while she watched, according to her grandfather.

Credit: NBC News

Then they took away her mother, who has not been seen since.

Earlier month, Adham crossed into Syria for the 28th time, carrying hundreds more toys and one special purple pony for Miral.

He said she broke out into a wide smile.

"They don't feel we're just giving them a toy, they feel that we're backing them," he said. "We're giving them the security that no matter what happened to you, we're here for you."

His children write notes for the Syrian children Credit: NBC News

Adham was born in Aleppo but now lives in Helskinki with his family.

He said the children appreciate the toys more than money or food.

"You know, I've given a kid $10 and they don't really know what to do with it," Adham said. "But give him a ball or a stuffed toy, he knows a thousand things to do with it. This is their mental therapy."