messages of thanks, hope, and cheer

Create & Decorate readers love to create, so when this information came across our desk, we knew we should share it! Why not take an hour to design a card, to two, for someone who would truly appreciate your artfully expressed wishes when needed most?

When 300,000+ holiday cards arrived from Operation Christmas Cards last December to U.S. and Canadian soldiers deployed overseas, they were the only correspondence about half of them received for the entire season. The soldiers, deployed in Afganistan, Iraq, Egypt, Japan and Germany, all received a card that included notes of gratitude, encouragement and support.

The card-sharing program was set up by Operation Christmas Cards, a nonprofit program of the New England Dream Center in Worcester, Mass. The group is partnering for it’s second year with EKSuccess Brands, a creative consumer products company that, along with its retail partners, contributed more than of the third of the cards that were delivered. This year, Operation Christmas Cards has expanded its outreach to include returning and wounded soldiers, in addition to those still deployed overseas.

As part of the 2012 efforts, EKSuccess is partnering again with key retail stores such as Michaels and A.C. Moore to host collection drives nationwide, as well as delivering an online course featuring all of its paper craft brands through its Spotted Canary education program. Operation Christmas Card T-shirts will also be available to purchase, with all profits going to support Operation Christmas Cards.

If you wish to participate, please feel free to register for classes both in-store and online at www.spottedcanary.com/occ and send holiday cards by Nov. 9, to EKSuccess Brands, C/O Operation Christmas Cards, 100 Delawanna Ave. Suite 700, Clifton, NJ, 07014. Please only send cards with handwritten encouraging messages and do not seal the envelopes or put individual postage on them. Anyone wishing to contribute monetarily or send cards after Nov. 9, should coordinate directly through Operation Christmas Cards at www.operationchristmascard.org. Please take a few minutes to visit this site to be inspired.

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