USPS Operation Santa® lets the public adopt the saddest letters to Santa and help needy families

An excellent guide for new volunteers is

A volunteer for brought smiles to this little girl’s face on Christmas.

Make a child smile on Christmas

Beginning Thanksgiving week, sad letters to Santa from children who need a brighter Christmas can be adopted by the public at®. Christmas volunteers may read letters from kids online and adopt one or more that move them, and later mail their gifts directly to the child or family who wrote to Santa.

The saddest letters ask Santa for only new shoes, a backpack for school, a warm coat, or Christmas dinner. Others are written by Moms whose kids are too little to write, and list their kids’ ages and clothing sizes, and tell why they need help for the holidays. Some say they lost their jobs, or have health or other life challenges.

One letter said, “I’m sad this Christmas because my Mom lost her job. Our furniture is old and my Mom cries a lot. I’m not asking for much, but I need new clothes. I feel ashamed sometimes at school.” Their letters are heartbreaking.

The lucky ones get answered.

Some volunteers feel alone and sad over the holidays, and find comfort and inspiration knowing they’ll put smiles on the faces of an underprivileged child on Christmas morning.

Be An Elf is not affiliated with the USPS Operation Santa®, but supports their program by increasing public awareness of it. The charity’s press releases and social media campaigns have recruited thousands of new volunteers who adopted letters and sent gifts to kids. Be An Elf is supported by a major in-kind grant from Google for free advertising, and by donations from the public. is an excellent online guide to the USPS® program, with smart tips for new volunteers, as well as for parents seeking help with Christmas. The group uses tax-deductible donations to adopt letters and send gifts to families. There’s even a team-building plan for companies to offer employees the option to volunteer for the USPS® program.

Be An Elf promises you’ll discover the true spirit of the holidays when you put a smile on a child’s face on Christmas morning.

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