Santa’s little helpers! New York couple reveal they’ve replied to 2,000 letters to Father Christmas mistakenly delivered to their apartment over 10 years
- Jim Glaub and Dylan Parker have lived in West 22nd street, New York, for years
- In 2010, the couple received hundreds of letters addressed to Santa Claus
- They included requests for shoes, blankets and food from needy children
- Couple began writing back to children, and recruited friends and family to help
A couple have revealed they have answered over 2,000 letters addressed to Santa Claus and delivered to their New York apartment from needy children every year.
Jim Glaub, 40, and Dylan Parker, 39, began receiving letters addressed to Santa Claus to their apartment on West 22nd Street in Manhattan in 2010.
Among them were heartbreaking requests from needy children asking for food, blankets and shoes with tear-jerking tales of how their family’s couldn’t afford a turkey on Christmas Day.
Dumbfounded by why the children had chosen them to send their requests to, the pair felt compelled to answer the letters and began asking family, friends and social media strangers to help.
Jim now hopes to expand the project to write letters back to children in the UK as well, telling BBC Radio 4: ‘We have a lot of families that have come out and said we could use a little miracle too so hopefully soon we will be crossing the pond.’
Jim Glaub, 40, and Dylan Parker, 39, have revealed they have answered over 2,000 letters addressed to Santa Claus and delivered to their New York apartment from needy children every year
Jim told Radio 4 that they can receive hundreds of letters each December and are yet to discover why children address notes to their New York address
Speaking to the Today programme, Jim said they were warned about the letters upon moving into the apartment.
He explained: ‘The gentlemen who’d lived there a few years (before us) said “these letters to Santa are going to come – only a couple – but just so you know, it happens”.’
But the couple were overwhelmed when they received hundreds of letters in 2010
Jim explained: ‘In 2010 we got one letter that came in, then a couple more. By the end of November we were at hundreds. In December it was over 400 – it was quite alarming.’
The couple began receiving the letters in 2010, with the former owner of the apartment warning them they would receive a few notes addressed to Santa Claus each year (pictured, the apartment)
Jim said they even fell out with their local postman because there were too many letters to fit into their mailbox.
To try to determine where the mystery letters were coming from, the couple opened a few.
Most of the requests come from children in New York and ask for basic necessities like coats, blankets and food.
Other letters asked for turkeys to eat on Christmas Day from children desperate to avoid going to a soup kitchen again.
One child asked for diapers for their baby brother and described the ‘rented room’ he lives in with his family
‘I was hoping you would keep in mind the homeless man under the bridge’: Another heartbreaking request from a child
‘Santa I would be extremely grateful if you can send my brother something. He’s 15.
‘Please don’t worry about me this year. I just want my brother to have a good Christmas. Our mom is not in our life. Our grandfather is raising us the best he can.
‘My brother is taking things the hardest. Last year we ate a soup kitchen. Please Santa, not this year too,’ one read.
Jim explained: ‘We threw a 1960s vintage holiday party and what ended up happening is that people saw a big stack of letters in the front of the room.
Jim said he and his partner were throwing a Christmas party when friends and family said they wanted to reply to the letters
The couple have been answering the letters for a decade and believe they have responded to 2,000 different requests
‘I told them the story and organically, people said, “I’ll take a letter! I’ll take a letter!”
‘It just sort of snapped, and I thought, “Oh we’re going to get people to furfil these. People wanted to help”.’
They decided to set up a not-for-profit to help fulfil Christmas wishes, called Miracle on 22nd Street, and asked friends and family to help pen responses to the children.
The group now estimate they have responded to 2,000 letters over the last 10 years, with Jim explaining they’re keen to launch the project in the UK.
He said: ‘We lived there for two years and were so thrilled by the outpouring of support from people in the UK.
The couple are now hoping to launch their Miracle on 22nd Street project in the UK to respond to notes from British children
The apartment’s new tenant has carried on the tradition and helps the pair organize the letters every year.
They are still clueless as to why their apartment receives all the letters.
Dylan previously revealed: ‘We’ve considered there’s an organization with a similar dress or if it’s a scam.
‘As it’s progressed I’ve cared about that less and less and been more like, is there an expectation here? What do we need to do?’
The street is however steeped in Christmas tradition. Just five doors down from the couple’s apartment is the townhouse where Clement Clarke Moore wrote ‘The Night Before Christmas’.
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