LITTLE CURRENT—Royal Canadian Legion Branch 177 in Little Current has once more taken up a challenge with other branches within the zone to see how many residents in its area will write Christmas cards to Canadian troops as part of Operation Christmas Cheer, and the eastern Manitoulin branch hopes it can turn its two-year streak as the top-performing branch into a three-peat this year.
Operation Christmas Cheer is a long-standing Legion tradition that asks Canadians to write Christmas cards to a random member of the Canadian Forces stationed either at a domestic base or serving abroad.
Branch 177 Comrade Linda Bowerman visited The Expositor Office in Little Current this past Monday to outline some of the changes to this year’s operation.
In past years, she had set up bags and boxes at nearby businesses, churches and other social gathering places. Given the disruptions of the COVID-19 pandemic, Comrade Bowerman has partnered with Island post offices as a collection point—a fitting location for the greeting cards.
The branch is asking that all Islanders pen a Christmas card (or several!) and seal them each in an envelope addressed to “Any Canadian Forces Member, P.O. Box 5004 Stn. Forces, Belleville, ON K8N 5W6.”
Writers can choose to sign their name or leave their actions anonymous, though receiving a personally signed card could offer extra warmth to the recipient who may be away from their family during the holiday season.
The deadline to send in cards is Thursday, December 10, so the powers that be can get them into the hands of service members before Christmas.
Those who choose to send a card do not have to put a stamp on their envelope, as this is a public service organized through the postal service. There are special boxes at each post office so writers can drop their cards when they gather their mail.
Branch 177 in Little Current has taken the honour of having the most submitted cards for the last two years in a row and Comrade Bowerman said she was hoping to keep the streak alive. Branch 76 in Sudbury issued the challenge to the whole zone last year and the Island spirit helped carry the win with ease.