Adopt a letter with USPS Operation Santa, help bring joy to a child

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398079 02: Children’s letters to Santa Claus are seen in Manhattan’s General Post Office December 3, 2001 in New York City. The New York Post Office’s “Operation Santa Claus” received 280,000 letters addressed to Santa last year, many of which were from needy children and were answered by members of the public and postal workers. (Photo by Mario Tama/Getty Images)

Thousands of letters are mailed to Santa each holiday season from children, mothers, fathers, guardians, and entire families. With the amount of letters sent, Santa needs a little help to answer the letters sent. That’s where you come in.

With USPS Operation Santa®, you can read letters from Santa’s mailroom and answer the ones he can’t. By “adopting” a letter, you can help make a holiday wish come true.

So how does it work?

USPS Operation Santa

First, you sign up and create a verified account with the USPS on their Operation Santa website. Once you do that, you can look and read through an online catalog of letters waiting to be adopted and choose the one that’s right for you. It can be a letter from a child in your community, or one that simply pulls at your heartstrings or that you connect with.

After that, it’s time to shop! You can spend as much money as you’d like on the child/family, and you don’t have to get everything that’s on the list – do what’s doable for you; it’ll make a difference no matter what. If you’re not sure you’ll be able to do this solo, you can sign up as part of a group starting Dec. 4 and adopt a letter (or letters). Just make sure to keep the gift anonymous – it’s from Santa, after all.

Wrap your gifts in your favorite holiday wrapping paper, and pack them into a box using USPS’ shipping guidelines. To protect the privacy of both those who write letters and those who respond, don’t write any addresses or notes on the package. Instead, use the provided labels and Note from Santa in your Adoption Confirmation Packet.

All that’s left to do is ship it – make sure it gets to a participating Post Office by Dec. 21!

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