Newswise — People from around the world are bringing smiles to patients and families who are spending this Valentine’s Day at Cincinnati Children’s Hospital Medical Center. This year, the hospital received a record number of nearly half a million electronic valentines, shattering last year’s record of 220,000.

“Valentines have arrived from across six continents, 130 countries and all 50 states, and they are still pouring in,” said Liz Smith, manager of Annual Giving at Cincinnati Children’s. “It just warms my heart because each one is someone who took the time to think about our patient families and submit a message.”

As a result of the overwhelming support, employees are blanketing the hospital and satellite locations with printed and digital valentines. New this year, Kolar assisted in creating new designs including games on the back and RPI Graphic Data Solutions helped with printing.

Child Life facility dog Leica got in on the fun distributing valentines from her work vest.

Three-year-old Elliot Carter is spending Valentine’s Day as an inpatient at the hospital. He wrapped his arms around Leica when she delivered valentines to his room.

“As a mom, it means everything to see your child happy and smiling,” said Leah Carter, Elliot’s mom. “It also brings us comfort to know that you have so many people rallying around you.”

The hospital used to average a few thousand e-cards when the Valentine’s Day program launched in 2014. It began as a way for folks to send well-wishes electronically to reduce the spread of infection.

You can continue to send well wishes at