Local American Red Cross Chapters and Pitney Bowes Invite the Public to Send a “Touch of Home” to Service Members, Veterans and Family Members this Holiday Season

“Holiday Mail for Heroes” to Deliver Greetings to U.S. Military Members and Veterans

Holiday Mail Iron Mountain Signing Event Oct 2010

For a fourth year, the American Red Cross and Pitney Bowes Inc. are teaming up to deliver holiday cards to service members, their families and veterans, many of whom will be far from home this holiday season. The Holiday Mail for Heroes program provides Americans with the opportunity to send holiday greetings and a note of thanks to our men and women of the U.S. Armed Forces.

From now until Dec. 10, the public is invited to send a “touch of home” through holiday cards that contain messages of cheer and appreciation. The Red Cross and Pitney Bowes will then screen cards for hazardous materials, sort and package the cards, and deliver them to military bases and hospitals, veteran’s hospitals and other locations during the holidays. Pitney Bowes is providing all screening, packaging and shipping at no charge. The Red Cross will utilize hundreds of volunteers to sort and box cards for delivery to service men and women, veterans and family members in November and December.   

“Sending a greeting card is a small effort that makes a big impact for our American heroes during the holiday season,” said Jody Weyers, volunteer and communications director at the Lakeland Chapter.  “The American Red Cross serves and supports members of the military, veterans, and their families by providing emergency communications, comfort and assistance each day. The Holiday Mail for Heroes program continues the Red Cross tradition of service to the armed forces.” 

Last year, with the help of Pitney Bowes, hundreds of volunteers screened, sorted and packaged cards that were delivered to military bases, veteran and military hospitals across the U.S. and around the world. This year, Oshkosh-based Miles Kimball has donated 2,500 holiday cards to support the local program.

On Veteran’s Day, Thursday, Nov. 11, there will be several events across the Northeastern Wisconsin Region where tables will be set-up for card-making. The following is a list of the locations:

  • Festival Foods, 2415 Westowne Ave, Oshkosh – 10 a.m.-2 p.m.
  • Forest Mall, 835 W. Johnson Street, Fond du Lac – AM time TBA
  • Piggly Wiggly, 810 W. Fulton Street, Waupaca – Time TBA
  • Bay De Noc Community College, 2001 N. Lincoln Road, Iron Mountain, MI – 9 a.m.-3 p.m.
  • American Legion Dinner, 916 River Ave, Iron Mountain, MI – 6 p.m.-8:30 p.m.
  • Midtown Mall, 1062 S. Stephenson Ave, Iron Mountain, MI – 9 a.m.-3:00 p.m.

 The Lakeland Chapter is supporting the program by introducing it to the University of Wisconsin-Green Bay. The UWGB Red Cross Club is partnering with the Student Life UWGB Nites event on Saturday, Nov. 6, 10:00 p.m. – 1:00 a.m. on campus. “With the help of faculty and students, we are spreading the word about the Holiday Mail program and we are hoping to have over 300 cards made by students at this event,” said Kristie Walker, UWGB Red Cross club member and GB Nites planner. “This is a great way to engage the community’s youth in helping support our Armed Services.”

Many community groups are also participating in the program. The following is a list of regional locations:

  • Holy Spirit Craft Show, Iron Mountain, MI, Nov. 20 and 21 from 10 a.m.-4 p.m.
  • Several Boy Scout and Girl Scout groups in the Waupaca area
  • Pitney Bowes in Neenah
  • Neenah/Menasha School District
  • Valley VNA Assisted Living Center in Neenah
  • Fond du Lac School District
  • Oshkosh School District
  • First Congregational Church of Oshkosh

“Few can truly understand the tremendous sacrifice that our military personnel and their families make every single day on the nation’s behalf,” said Vicki O’Meara, senior vice president and president of Pitney Bowes Management Services and government & regulatory affairs. “Now more than ever, it is important for all Americans to seize the opportunity to say ‘thank you.’ We are thrilled to join with the American Red Cross to help make that happen.”

Holiday cards should be addressed and sent to:

Holiday Mail for Heroes

P.O. Box 5456

Capitol Heights, MD 20791-5456

Cards must be received no later than Dec. 10. Envelopes are not required. Cards received after this date will be returned to senders. For reasons of processing and safety, participants are asked to refrain from sending “care packages,” monetary gifts, using glitter or including any inserts with the cards. 

 Visit redcross.org/holidaymail for a full list of recommended guidelines and best practices on the Holiday Mail for Heroes program.

Additional ways to become involved with the campaign include connecting with fellow card senders through Facebook at http://www.facebook.com/redcross and Twitter at http://www.twitter.com/redcross using the hashtag #holidaymail.

 Visit www.newredcross.org to learn more about the Northeast Wisconsin Region Red Cross Service to the Armed Forces.

 About the American Red Cross:

The American Red Cross shelters, feeds and provides emotional support to victims of disasters; supplies nearly half of the nation’s blood; teaches lifesaving skills; provides international humanitarian aid; and supports military members and their families. The Red Cross is a charitable organization — not a government agency — and depends on volunteers and the generosity of the American public to perform its mission. For more information, please visit www.redcross.org or join our blog at http://blog.redcross.org.

About Pitney Bowes:
Celebrating its 90th year of innovation, Pitney Bowes provides software, hardware and services that integrate physical and digital communications channels. Long known for making its customers more productive, Pitney Bowes is increasingly helping other companies grow their business. Pitney Bowes is a $5.6 billion company and employs 33,000 worldwide. Pitney Bowes: Every connection is a new opportunity™. www.pb.com

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