Photos further down this page show volunteers from the public reading children’s letters to Santa.
The first few photos below show real children and Moms receiving gifts from volunteers for the USPS ® program on Christmas Eve, 2004. At that time, the Postal Service ® still left children’s home addresses on their letters, and volunteers could deliver gifts directly to families’ front doors. It was a moving experience.
In 2008, the US Postal Service ® began removing children’s home addresses to protect their privacy; only postal workers may deliver gifts now.
We hope one day media will follow postal workers as they deliver gifts from volunteers just before Christmas. For now, these are the best photos we have of children and families receiving gifts.
Journalists may click here to download a 100 MB+ folder of high resolution photos, scans of children’s letters to Santa. On that page, there is also a separate link to download a package of broadcast quality HD video B-roll. Please credit BeAnElf.org if photos or video are used.
When clickable, the photos link to a corresponding high resolution file of that photo.
Scroll further down this page for the photos of volunteers reading letters to Santa in Los Angeles. All the photos on this page were taken by volunteer Elf Patrick Reynolds, except the ones he is in. Only credit BeAnElf.org if photos are used.
Be An Elf volunteer Hans Dohm delivers Christmas gifts on Christmas eve, 2004.
Since 2008, only mail carriers may deliver volunteers’ gifts.
A mother is overwhelmed with surprise and delight. “I had
no money to buy my children presents this year.
Thank you so much! This is wonderful.” And —
With that, she began to cry.
Hans just held her while she sobbed.
Three single mothers were all smiles. The Moms and their
kids were sharing this home. They said there was
no bed, and Hans got them a bed.
Guess who wrote to Santa! Our guess is, she
shared her gifts with her sisters.
The back of volunteer Elf Hans Dohm’s van, loaded with presents. This was taken Christmas eve 2004,
as Hans delivered his gifts to needy children who wrote to Santa.
Photos below were taken in the Los Angeles post office on Central Avenue,
in South Central Los Angeles, in December, 2013.
Above: volunteer Patrick Reynolds reads letters to Santa in Los Angeles on December 3, 2013.