(CNN/Gray News) - This year, you can bring a little Christmas magic to a child in need with the United States Postal Service’s “Operation Santa.”
The program started in 1912, with local postal workers and everyday people responding to children’s letters to Santa. It evolved over the next 100 years into an initiative all its own.
Today, people can go to uspsoperationsanta.com to get involved.
An online form will ask potential participants to fill out a form and verify their identity.
Then they can browse letters online and “adopt” a child.
All over the country kids send letters to Santa, asking for everything from toys to basics, like a warm coat or shoes.
You can pick a letter from any city in the country, and USPS is adding letters to the site throughout the holiday season. They urge participants to check back as letters from new states are added and the list expands.
It’s also tax deductible.
The children are kept anonymous. Any personal information, last names, addresses and contact information is redacted.
Each letter has a code that links to the writer’s address. Postal workers use that code to find the address and send the box where it needs to go.
Just remember: The gift needs to be mailed out by Dec. 20.
For parents who want their child added to the list, beanelf.org has all the information they need.