Thank an American Hero
This Veterans Day, we hope you’ll take a moment to join First Lady Michelle Obama and thank an American hero. Sending that message is easy. You can send a note on JoiningForces.gov by clicking on the “Share Your Message” tab. Either way, your card will be delivered to service members and veterans throughout the holiday season. To get you started, we’ve pasted the First Lady’s card,send your own on JoiningForces.gov
For a seventh year, American Red Cross and Pitney Bowes are partnering to hold the American Red Cross Holiday Mail for Heroes program to ensure all Americans have an opportunity to send a touch of home this holiday season to members of our U.S. military, veterans and their families, many of whom will be far away from home this holiday season.
The process is very simple and takes no time at all – All you need is a pen and piece of paper to share your appreciation for the sacrifices members of the U.S. Armed Forces make to protect our freedoms The Holiday Mail for Heroes mail box is open and ready to receive for your cards. Please send all mail to:
Every card received will be screened for hazardous materials by Pitney Bowes and then reviewed by Red Cross volunteers working around the country.
Please observe the following guidelines to ensure a quick reviewing process:
* All cards being sent in for 2013 Holiday Mail For Heroes program should be postmarked no later than Friday, December 5, 2014.
* Ensure that all cards are signed.
* Use generic salutations such as “Dear Service Member.” Cards addressed to specific individuals can not be delivered through this program.
* Only cards are being accepted. Do not send or include letters.
* Do not include email or home addresses on the cards, as the program is not meant to foster pen pal relationships.
* Do not include inserts of any kind, including photos, as these items will be removed during the reviewing process.
* Participants are encouraged to mail as many cards as they are comfortable sending. If you are mailing a large quantity, please bundle the cards and place them in large mailing envelopes or use a flat rate box from the post office. Each card does not need its own envelope, as cards will be removed from all envelopes before distribution.
* Please refrain from sending holiday cards with glitter. Many of these cards will be delivered to military and veterans medical facilities and the glitter could interfere with a patient’s recovery.
* If you are mailing a large quantity of cards, please bundle them and place them in large mailing envelopes or flat rate postal shipping boxes. Each card does not need its own envelope, as envelopes will be removed from all cards before distribution.
Holiday Mail For Heroes
P.O. Box 5456
Capitol Heights, MD 20791-5456
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As close as we can tell, the Postal Service began receiving letters to Santa Claus more than 100 years ago. However, it was in 1912 that Postmaster General Frank Hitchcock authorized local postmasters to allow postal employees and citizens to respond to the letters in the program that became known as Operation Santa.
In 1940, mail volume for Santa increased so much the Postal Service invited charitable organizations and corporations to participate to provide written responses to the letters and small gifts to the children who wrote them.
Over the past 69 years, the program has taken on a life of its own. Postal facilities in cities around the country today allow charitable organizations, major corporations, local businesses and individuals to adopt letters to Santa to make children’s holiday dreams come true from coast to coast.
Individuals and organizations interested in adopting a letter should go to a participating office and complete a participation form.