Help us answer sad letters to Santa written by 
children who need a brighter Christmas

You can adopt real letters to Santa written by underprivileged kids, take home one or more that move you, and send your gifts directly to the children who wrote to Santa.

You can also adopt children’s sad letters online at this site. Your tax-deductible gift to Be An Elf will help sponsor the letters we obtain through the USPS Operation Santa ® program next Christmas.  

Catch the true spirit of the holidays and make a needy child smile! 

Every year, in addition to adopting the neediest letters to Santa, Be An Elf creates public awareness of the USPS Operation Santa ® program, and recruits new volunteers who adopt their own letters to Santa from low-income children. Volunteer Elves read and select letters to Santa at a participating post office, and send their gifts directly to the children who wrote them. Contributions to Be An Elf are tax-deductible; we are a 501c3 charity. 

You may obtain children’s letters only through the USPS Operation Santa ® program. A selection of letters may be re-adopted online at this site. We are not affiliated with the USPS ®, but Be An Elf supports its wonderful program in several important ways.

Thanks to donations from people like you, Be An Elf adopts children’s letters and makes them available to the public. We also build stronger public awareness of Operation Santa and recruit many new volunteers around the nation. Not least, on our How to be an Elf page, we link to a national list of postal branches where children’s letters are available, and provide tips for volunteering. If the program is not offered near you, we provide some excellent alternative ways to volunteer at Christmas.

Some of our volunteers feel alone and sad over the holidays, and find comfort and inspiration being part of this program. Others have families and bring their older kids to teach them the meaning of Christmas.

The USPS ® makes the Santa letters available to the public every year starting around December 1st, and the program ends a few days before Christmas. Come alone, or bring your older kids!

At our How to be an Elf page, near the top you’ll find a link to the most current National Directory of USPS Operation Santa ® postal branches. In 2016, only 15 postal branches nationwide are offering the program, mostly in very large cities. If there is no participating branch near you, this site offers excellent Other Ways to Be An Elf.

We also provide great tips for adopting Santa letters. We suggest you host a small Christmas gathering and share the work, the cost and the fun. Ask each friend to bring a gift, and then wrap them all at the party. Volunteer Elf Lauren in Brooklyn, NY, gave a Be An Elf party and asked her friends to bring a gift or contribute toward the cost, and they wrapped the gifts together. At our How to be an Elf page you’ll find other great tips, too, like our suggestions for buying gifts for children. 

Please share this site on Facebook or tweet it using the icons at the top. See our sample Great tweets and posts.

When reporters mention this page at the end of coverage of the USPS Operation Santa ® program, the public can more easily locate a participating branch.

Be An Elf’s mission is to make more underprivileged children smile on Christmas morning, and to inspire people with the real spirit of Christmas. The USPS ® started their wonderful program in 1912, and since then they have never missed a year. 

If you can’t volunteer to adopt a letter to Santa and send gifts, please donate online to Be An Elf or give by check to support our group’s gift giving and mission.

Your gift will be used to send gifts to needy families, create public awareness of the program and to recruit new volunteers for the Operation Santa ® program. Together we can bring joy to more children in real need on Christmas morning.

Support our mission! Post on your Facebook page, donate online and volunteer to Be an Elf!

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Be An Elf is a tax-exempt Christmas children's charity, and while we support it, we are not affiliated with the United States Postal Service® or Operation Santa ® Our mission is to increase public awareness of the program, recruit volunteers, and make needy children smile on Christmas. ©2016 Be An Elf - All rights reserved.