Fairfield County Post Office Wants To Help Santa

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Millions of kids each year write letters to Santa Claus, this year several needy children will have theirs answered by his helpers.
Millions of kids each year write letters to Santa Claus, this year several needy children will have theirs answered by his helpers. Photo Credit: Courtesy of Flickr User DoodleDeMoon

STAMFORD, Conn. — The U.S. Postal Service is giving people in Stamford and the rest of Fairifled County the chance to play Santa Claus this year with the return of “Operation Santa” to the state.

The post office will separate the letters to Santa from kids in the area considered to be needy, and allow people to “adopt” a family or child and send them gifts for the holidays, Christine Dugas, a spokesperson for the post office said.

Connecticut post offices stopped participating in the program a few years ago, and decided to bring it back in Stamford, 24 Camp Ave., and Hartford, 141 Weston St., to see what kind of interest there is. Operation Santa is a voluntary program for each post office to participate in.

So far in 2012, only a few letters from needy children have been received. “But it’s still early in the season,” Dugas said, expecting more letters to come in as the holiday approaches.

The letters from children request all sorts of things Dugas said explaining she has seen kids send in pages from magazines, wishing him a Merry Christmas, and asking for things for their parents, among others. “When it comes to Santa letters we get needy, greedy and everything in between,” she said, “They’re entertaining.”

To “adopt” a letter people have to go to a participating post office and request the letters to Santa, and present a valid photo identification to see them, she said. Then people need to return gifts to that post office. Shipping must be paid for by the donor.

Information from kids and parents writing to Santa will be kept private to the donors, except for first name, gender, and age. Writers have to have a return address on their letter to Santa because, “While he may be able to see you when you’re sleeping and when you’re awake, his helpers don’t,” Dugas said.

Operation Santa is in its 100th year, starting in 1912, with people reading and sending letters back to the children, a release said. People and organizations first began sending gifts through the program in 1940, the release said.

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