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ATLANTA -- You have a chance to make the holidays brighter for men and women serving overseas in the military.

The Red Cross Holiday Mail for Heroes program is a way for the public to send words of inspiration, thanks and encouragement to our military heroes.

Tuesday, Georgia's first lady Sandra Dealhelped officially kick-off the Red Cross 2013 Holiday Mail for Heroes campaign in Georgia.

"This marks the seventh year of the Red Cross national Holiday Mail for Heroes program, and our goal is to raise its profile and broaden its reach," said Terri Badour Duckett, CEO of Georgia's Red Cross. "We're inviting all Georgians to give something that truly means something by sharing their appreciation for our military families with words of holiday cheer sent through the Red Cross."

Since 2006, with the help of the public, the American Red Cross has distributed more than 6.5 million cards to members of the Armed Forces during the holiday season.

Holiday cards should be addressed to "Dear Service Member, Veteran, or Military Family" because those cards can be shared with anyone in the military community.

Avoid buying or making cards with glitter - glitter can actually aggravate health issues for the wounded or ill.

Items like letters, photos or gift cards won't make it through the screening and sorting process.

If you want to send a large quantity of cards, skip the individual envelopes and place your cards in a big mailing envelope or flat-rate postal shipping box.

To ensure cards are delivered in time for the holidays, they must be postmarked no later than Friday, December 6th, 2013.

Mail Cards to:
Holiday Mail for Heroes
P.O. Box 5456
Capitol Heights, MD 20791-5456

You can also share photos and videos of card signing efforts or send holiday greetings for troops by using the #HolidayMail on your Facebook, Twitter, Instagram and Vine accounts.

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