Getting into the holiday spirit? Even if you’re feeling a bit “humbugged”, answering a Letter to Santa just might be the kick start you need to be of good cheer–while you spread some of the holiday kind. The U.S. Post Office has been officially sponsoring the Letters to Santa program for 101 years.
Typically, these letters are written by very needy children, often asking for much-needed supplies for their families like diapers, “a blanket for my baby brother” or formula, as much as a toy or game for their siblings or themselves.
Schools, charities, civic groups and individuals may contact their local post office now through December 24th via the USPS website or calling 1-800-275-8777 to ask if your post office is participating in the Letters to Santa Program (known as Operation Santa Claus in New York City). Groups must make an appointment to review the letters, and present a letter of introduction on letterhead; individuals do not need to make an appointment. Either way, you must present a valid ID.
The letters are coded; once you’ve selected your letter(s) and shopped, wrap and return the packages ready for mailing and the package will be coded to the letter. You, as one of Santa’s “elves,” are responsible for postage.
You may be aware of other ways to give in your community,from food banks to soup kitchens to “giving trees” at local places of worship. Everyone can “play Santa” in their own way–what’s yours?