Sunday, May 23, 2010

AnyHero cards: Q&A

News from the homefront—even from strangers—is a treasure to those far from home. "Hero Mail is great," says one Chaplain. "I go out and pray with the soldiers before missions and I hand out Hero Mail." Letters are distributed to those who rarely get mail, or to those most in need of encouragement the day the box arrives. "It helps to know that we are remembered!"

Following are a number of the most often-asked questions about these letters.

"Why are they called AnyHero letters?"
When a letter is addressed to AnyHero, it can be given to someone from any branch of service; a note written to "Dear Soldier" is appropriate for someone serving in the Army, but since many of our contacts are with mixed units, using "Dear hero" as the salutation gives them the freedom to pass it on to whoever needs encouragement the most.

"How often do you send these?"
In every box, if we're able! That means weekly we need more cards and letters.

"How do I even know what to say in a letter?"
If you've got the gift of gab—or if all you know is how to write "thanks" and sign your name!—you can write a letter that will encourage a deployed service member! Letters can be long or short, on a card or a piece of typing paper, chatty about life at home or just a brief message of gratitude. Just keep it upbeat—even a fun weather report, a story about something your chlid said, or a clipping from the funnies brings a little piece of home to a faraway land! Check out this great collection of poems that have been written by our own OWH family by clicking here!

"Do I sign my note with my full name?"
You can do whatever you feel comfortable with; preference is at least first name and hometown/state, but you can put your contact information in a letter as well. Those who receive it may or may not write back, but it's possible you could get a message back.

"Can I write just one?"
You bet! We'd love to receive one AnyHero letter in every box of donated cards if we could! The more love from across America we can share, the better.

"How do the letters get distributed?"
Each of our boxes of blank cards goes out with a package of Hero Mail; the contacts who receive them then share the mail with those who get the least mail from home, or to someone struggling and in need of extra encouragement. Some post all the mail, as seen in the photo above; others tuck a note into their pocket to carry with them on missions.

"Can my kids draw pictures to send?"
Absolutely! We hear from so many heroes who love to hang up kids' art on the walls around them. Please refer to our school and scouts post for guidance for your children, whether your own, your school, or a scout troop.

***Edited to add: More tips on what to write in your cards, learn from how kids do it!***


Martha said...

Is there a deadline to send holiday cards as Any Hero cards? For some reason I have 3 weeks before as a time frame in my head but heaven only knows what it really is, lol. Can you set me straight?

Operation Write Home said...

We can take them til about the first week of December (I answered you already elsewhere but realised I should post this here for everyone!)

Marlene said...

I make cards with my grand children....they are learning how to papercraft...would it be possible to include a picture of the girls making cards to send to any might even be something that they could do in school as a class project.
Marlene in Ohio

Sandy said...

Sure you can include photos! Just be sure the children aren't identified (address or full name) for their protection. But our heroes love seeing photos of supporters at home!

MJ said...

I am having my first event today! I am so excited. This first one is to make 300 cards For Any Hero. I have three designs made we will make 100 of each. Then my congregation will be writing notes in them the first weeks of February. Is this something you would want/need. Would I need to send envelopes with each? Also we plan to begin making all occasions cards too and send them on. With those do you just put a regular stamp on each envelope for the heroes to use or is there a different postage. Thanks for all you do!

patm said...

Where is addresses to where we send the cards? pat

Operation Write Home said...

Check the Mailroom on our homepage -


Anonymous said...

This is a question: I'm confused. Do you send blank cards AND written (the Any Hero?) ones? Thanks,Susan

Operation Write Home said...

Susan yes - we send both. Boxes generally contain about 325-350 cards with 20 AnyHero cards/letters on top!

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songbird cindi said...

If I include a batch of AnyHero cards with my shipment, will they be sent in separate shipments out? I'm asking because the card designs will likely be the same, although the messages inside will be different.

Operation Write Home said...

Yes we definitely split them up Cindi - we like to have mail from all over the country in each packet of letters!

Clare said...

Hi, is there anywhere that I can send cards/messages to from the UK or can anyone point me in the direction of a British organisation based here, I would so love to send cards to our hero's also, regards to all for an absolutley fabulous idea, xxx

Operation Write Home said...

I wish I knew, Clare :(

Stephanie said...

Perhaps I missed it, but what is the best way to address the envelope containing an "AnyHero" card? And do we seal those? Thanks!

Operation Write Home said...

You can write "Hero" or something like that on the envie. I've seen:

Very Important Hero
An American Hero
Gratitude enclosed
To someone I admire
Any Hero

Anonymous said...

is there a Canadian verson of this service for the Canadian troops??

Operation Write Home said...

No Canadian version, but we do have a number of interntional stampers - and our heroes share the cards with international forces.

Cynthia said...

Hi there! I'm a teacher and our students wrote some letters for the Heros as a Thanksgiving project. They wrote about why they are thankful for the troops. Maybe I'm missing something, but I don't have time to sit and hunt. Where can I send our letters so that you can get them to the Heros?

Operation Write Home said...

Hi Cynthia! I tried finding an address for you but wasn't successful on your blogger acct - hopefully you'll come back to check.

Our mailing addresses are on the website here, in The Mailroom:

Email me if you have other questions,