Military, Families, Veterans, Remembered by Millions during Red Cross Holiday Mail for Heroes Program

One of the many cards distributed. Thank you to the Green Bay Packers for  providing the picture and Camera Corner Connection Point in creating these cards for our community to sign for military members and Veterans.

One of the many cards distributed. Thank you to the Green Bay Packers for providing the picture and Camera Corner Connecting Point in creating these cards for our community to sign for military members and Veterans.

The American public remembered members of the U.S. military, their families and veterans by sending in more than 1.2 million cards during the sixth annual Holiday Mail for Heroes program, a joint initiative of the American Red Cross and Pitney Bowes.

The holiday cards bearing messages of thanks and gratitude were distributed all over the world, on military bases and in military hospitals, veteran’s hospitals and to military families in the U.S. and abroad. All across the country, people from all walks of life sent in cards, remembering the men and women who serve their country.

This year, nine National Football League teams supported the program by helping host card-signing events at games and celebrities such as Trace Adkins supported the campaign. Members of the U.S. House of Representatives and Senate held card signings on Capitol Hill. The first families of Pennsylvania, Kentucky and Georgia visited military and veterans’ hospitals to distribute cards.

“We thank all the generous people who collectively sent in more than a million cards this year,” said Sherri Brown, senior vice president, Service to the Armed Forces at the Red Cross. “The cards went to people all over the world, to places far and near, including ships at sea. These expressions of thanks and cheer make the holidays a little brighter for those who have sacrificed so much for our country.”

The cards went to a special post office box operated by Pitney Bowes, who screened, packaged and shipped the cards at no charge to Red Cross offices around the world. Red Cross and Pitney Bowes volunteers helped screen, sort and deliver the holiday greetings to the military, veterans and their families.

Holiday Mail for Heroes began in December 2007, when WalterReedArmyMedicalCenter in Washington, D.C. approached the Red Cross to assist in distributing thousands of holiday cards to hospitalized servicemen and women.  In response to this request, the Red Cross partnered with Pitney Bowes to turn the project into a larger opportunity that could reach members of the military at other medical facilities in this country and abroad.

About Pitney Bowes:
Delivering more than 90 years 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 through advanced customer communications management. Pitney Bowes is a $5.4 billion company and employs 30,000 worldwide. Pitney Bowes: Every connection is a new opportunity™. www.pb.com

About the American Red Cross:
The American Red Cross shelters, feeds and provides emotional support to victims of disasters; supplies about 40 percent of the nation’s blood; teaches skills that save lives; provides international humanitarian aid; and supports military members and their families. The Red Cross is a not-for-profit organization that depends on volunteers and the generosity of the American public to perform its mission. For more information, please visit redcross.org or join our blog at http://blog.redcross.org.

 

More than 23,000 Cards Collected Through Holiday Mail for Heroes

2012-12-05_13-26-43_717 - barbara - group

Thank you to our partners at Pitney Bowes for helping to mail the cards collected from the community. (l-r) Steve Hansen, Melissa Rieckoff, Nicole Prill, Deb Niec, Teri Klarner and Shawn Kiser.

Thousands of veterans, military families and active-duty service members at hospitals and installations around the world will receive a message of hope and joy this holiday season thanks to the efforts of people in Eastern Wisconsin. That region of the American Red Cross collected more than 23,000 cards from this year’s Holiday Mail for Heroes campaign.

“The outpouring of support from local businesses, community groups, schools and churches is amazing,” says Shawn Kiser, Regional Project Manager for Holiday Mail for Heroes in Eastern Wisconsin. “From Milwaukee to Manitowoc and even Michigan’s Upper Peninsula, thousands of people took the time to either fill out a holiday card or make their own to show their appreciation for those who serve our country.”

The region set a goal to collect 10,000 cards this year. It far surpassed that goal thanks to the efforts of the programs partners. They include: Aurora, Camera Corner Connecting Point, Green Bay Packers,  Humana, Kimberly-Clark, National Exchange Bank & Trust, Pitney Bowes, Schneider National, UW-Green Bay along with many others. We thank them for their support.

Pitney Bowes in Neenah covered the cost to ship thousands of cards to a location on the east coast where the cards are scanned and sorted. Once that process is complete, thousands of cards will return to the Red Cross in Eastern Wisconsin for distribution into the community.

It’s never too early to begin planning for next year’s Holiday Mail for Heroes campaign. If you want to become involved, contact Shawn Kiser at: Shawn.Kiser@redcross.org.

Click HERE to see photos from our different partners card hosting events.

American Red Cross Lakeland Chapter and Pitney Bowes Invite 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

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. 

Between September 7 and December 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, 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.” 

Hear first hand from Lauren Dunn on how important our Services to Armed Forces is in keeping connected with her loved one.

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.

“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.”

Locally we are 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, November 6, 10:00pm-1:00am 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. “This is a great way to engage the community’s youth in helping support our Armed Services.”

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 redcross.org to learn more about our Services to 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

 

 

 

Send a Touch of Home to Those Who Serve Our Country

 

Send a touch of home to the real heroes of America and their families! Holiday Mail for Heroes is back again!

For the third year in a row, the American Red Cross and Pitney Bowes are working together to collect, sort and distribute holiday cards to service members, veterans and their families.

The Red Cross and Pitney Bowes will begin accepting cards on November 2, 2009. So get your pens and postage stamps ready and watch for the address in the coming weeks on RedCross.org.

All cards must be postmarked no later than Monday, December 7, 2009. Cards postmarked after December 7 will be returned to the sender. This deadline ensures enough time to sort and distribute cards before the holidays.

Every card received will be screened for hazardous materials by Pitney Bowes and then reviewed by Red Cross volunteers working around the country.

If you would like to begin working on your cards now, here are some quick guidelines to ensure your cards makes to a hero as quickly as possible:

Do…

  • Ensure that all cards are signed.
  • Make cards more meaningful to a wide variety of recipients by using “Dear Service Member, Family or Veteran” rather than any more specific language. You are encouraged to send holiday-neutral cards rather than religious-themed cards. Note: Cards addressed to specific individuals cannot be delivered through this program.
  • Limit the number of cards to 15 from any one person or 50 from any one school class, business or group. If you are mailing a large quantity, please bundle the cards and place them in large mailing envelopes. Each card does not need its own envelope, as envelopes will be removed from all cards before distribution.

Do not…

  • Send letters. Only cards are being accepted.
  • Include email or home addresses on the cards, as the program is not meant to foster pen pal relationships.
  • Include cards with excessive amounts of glitter. Because cards may be received by wounded service members and veterans in hospitals, large quantities of glitter could aggravate existing health problems.
  • Include inserts of any kind, including photos, as these items will be removed during the reviewing