Adopt a letter from a child or family to lend a hand this holiday season.

By Nashia Baker
November 19, 2020
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It's been 108 years since the United States Postal Service (USPS) launched the annual "Operation Santa" letter campaign—and this year it will be undergoing one significant change. According to CNN, the initiative is officially going digital and expanding nationwide for more accessibility amid the COVID-19 pandemic. "The program has always been about providing holiday gifts for families who may not have the means to provide for anything more than basic everyday needs," Kim Frum, a spokeswoman for USPS, said.

High Angle View Of Person Dressed In Santa Claus Costume Using Laptop While Sitting On Sofa
Credit: Getty / Gabriel Vergani / EyeEm

The program gives children and adults alike the chance the write letters directly to Santa Claus online, but you can also keep with tradition by writing a letter and sending it in an envelope with a first-class stamp as usual. If you opt not to go the digital route, address your envelope to: Santa Claus, 123 Elf Road, North Pole 88888. Starting on December 4, the letters will be processed and shared at USPSOperationSanta.com. From there, the letters will go live on the site and companies or individuals can grant children and families their wishes during the holiday season after going through a brief registration and ID verification process.

While this program is available for anyone to participate in, its focus is to lend a hand to children and families in need. "This year, there are likely more families impacted financially and emotionally. It will be hard to celebrate the holidays without loved ones, whether because of distance or actual loss," Frum said. "But being able to provide even the tiniest bit of normalcy or spark of happiness to those in need would mean the world to so many people right now."

Frum added that while the USPS team has received hundreds of thousands of letters in the program's 100-plus years, this year is just as important to lend a hand to those who need it most. "2020 has seen its share of challenges affecting individuals and families in so many ways," she said. "COVID-19 resulted in job losses, temporary unemployment, and, sadly, the loss of family and friends. Couple that with devastation from natural disasters, and it's easy to see why USPS Operation Santa program is more important than ever."

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