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Globe Santa helps familes with ailing children

James Brett, president of The New England Council, presented Globe Santa with a donation.
Mary O’Connor for The Boston Globe
James Brett, president of The New England Council, presented Globe Santa with a donation.

Many of the letters Globe Santa receives from families seeking help providing gifts for their children bear the sad news that one or more of the youngsters face serious health problems.

One such handwritten letter came from a Boston mother who said one of her “two beautiful daughters,” a 7-year-old girl, is disabled: She needs oxygen therapy, she doesn’t walk, and she can’t see or hear very well.

The other daughter is a healthy 6-year-old, and the mother also has a beautiful, healthy 16-month-old son.

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“This Christmas,” the mother’s letter said, “I would like to ask you a big favor, and I would like you to provide us with some toys or a gift card so I can buy some toys for my 2 little princesses and my little prince.”

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The mother explained why she was writing to Globe Santa for help. “I can’t work because I mostly take care of my children by myself,” she wrote.

She concluded, “I hope you can read this letter. God bless you, and Merry Christmas.”

Thanks to thousands of Globe Santa Friends these children will receive gifts

Sad letters like this one prompt more fortunate people, sometimes families or businesses, to send contributions each year to the Globe Santa Fund.

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These letters inspire many schoolchildren to come together and stage fund-raising events so they can help bring happiness to less fortunate children.

This year is the 57th year that the Globe Santa program has been carried out, and ­because of current economic conditions the pleas for help number in the thousands.

Any financial contribution, no matter how big or how small, would be most appreciated, particularly by thousands of needy children.

Last year, gifts were distributed to 56,665 children in 32,240 families.