Several Postal Service locations saw big increases in Operation Santa activity last month.
Employees in New York City shipped more than 4,000 packages containing gifts requested through the program, about twice as many as the previous year.
“It was rewarding to witness the enthusiasm of our customers, many of whom were participating for the first time,” said Customer Relations Coordinator Gail Branham.
Other locations experienced similar goodwill.
Pacific Area’s Santa Ana District reported 170 shipments, a 30 percent increase from last year, while neighboring Sierra Coastal District shipped 140 packages, a 60 percent increase.
The generosity continued in Chicago and Cleveland, which also reported increases in customer participation rates.
Through Operation Santa, Postal Service employees and customers help families in need by “adopting” their letters to Santa Claus and granting their holiday wishes.
USPS attributes the increase to the strong reputation for the program, which marked its 105th anniversary in 2017, as well as innovation: The Postal Service tested a digital version of Operation Santa that allowed New York City participants to go online to search, read and adopt letters.
Chicago Customer Services Manager Janice Hall said she wouldn’t be surprised to see the numbers climb again in 2018.
“We saw many organizations unload gifts from vans and trucks [and] each and every one stated their goal was to help more families next year,” she said.