I have been a busy Santa for so long that I have not taken the time to go on a vacation for over 50 years. I stay up in the North Pole and tinker around the workshop managing the elves year-round, unless it is Christmas Day, of course. Lately, I have noticed that the landscape close to my home is changing rapidly; I see less snow than I used to.
Last year, I decided it was time to go back to my favourite little place in the world where Ms. Claus and I had such a wonderful time long ago. I looked it up online only to discover that it has completely disappeared. It was submerged underwater and lost forever because of climate change.
I used to keep up with the news but because there has just been so much going on all over the world, I rarely watch anymore. My doctor has told me to keep things positive and to only listen to the happy news channel. You see, Santa always wants to understand why the people on the naughty list don’t seem to learn the importance of trying to do the right thing. I always think I can steer the “naughty-listers’’ in the right direction; however, some have caused me terrible heartache. This is why my advisors have counselled me to create boundaries and not follow all of the bad news so closely. This must be why I was unaware of the havoc being caused by climate change all over the world.
Santa went down the rabbit hole and learned all about the environmental struggles that our planet is facing. I was very sad to learn about how much the earth has transformed in such a short period. I started thinking of ways that I could help. After talking it over with my senior elves, I decided it was time to reach out and share my thoughts with all of you.
Santa and my advisors held consultations to put together a plan to get the right message out to the world as quickly as possible so that next Christmas can be a new beginning for all. We feel that Earth Day is the perfect day to share our important message as we need to reach as many people as possible.
WE NEED TO STOP CONSUMING SO MUCH: This means that we have to change the expectations of children at Christmas time. If your children are used to getting lots of gifts from Santa, tell them about this letter. Please tell them that Santa cares too much about them and the earth and has decided that from now on, he will try to give gifts that are very durable, preferably made of natural materials and ethically sourced. I have also decided that it is time to outsource some of the gift-making. I have reached out to many artisans and small businesses around the world and asked them to take more of the load off of the elves from now on. There are a few reasons for this partnership: A greater number of the gifts will be locally sourced, and purchasing from them will mean supporting local, small businesses and their families; by supporting companies that care about human beings and the health of the earth, we can bring about needed change to our environment that is being polluted and harmed by the mass-production of cheap, disposable items in unsustainable ways. Finally, I have tasked the elves with an even more important role, to fight climate change year-round.
The elves will have less time to tinker in the workshop. Gifts will cost more and there will be fewer gifts per child, but children will receive quality items. Children will be reminded of the importance of supporting their community, appreciating good craftsmanship, and generally becoming more aware and environmental at the same time. Gifts from Santa should be appreciated and children should be excited about them. I have noticed over the years, that because there are just so many gifts under the tree, kids are losing interest in the spirit of Christmas and the bulk of gifts end up barely used nor appreciated. This is not good for the environment nor is it good for the future of humanity.
WE NEED TO CHOOSE GIFTS THAT ARE ENVIRONMENTALLY PACKAGED: Generally speaking, gifts should not be wrapped in any kind of plastic. Many other packaging alternatives are better for the earth and we should be reusing materials or supporting those companies that are paying more out of their pockets to create recyclable or biodegradable wrapping. I started a pilot project a few years ago with parents in different countries where I asked them to collect all of the single socks they find in the house, those whose pair seems to have mysteriously disappeared in the washing machine or the dryer. I requested that about one month before Christmas or with the children’s Christmas lists, parents send me a bag of those socks (washed please) so that we, here at the wrapping station, can slip the little gifts such as stockings stuffers into them and use them over and over again every year. This helps us reduce waste. The pilot project was a success and now I’m going to try to get more parents to send me their mismatched socks. It’s a good start for sure.
We are all in this together and we must do what we can to save the environment. Let’s start living every day with all of this in mind. We are all capable of changing things, one step at a time. We need to teach the children how to preserve mother earth.
I have a long list of things that people can do together to make Christmas time special and to focus on experiences rather than things, a lot of them involve music and healthy and delicious food so stay tuned. I also welcome suggestions if any of you have ideas to share.
This Earth Day, I am targeting Christmas because I can; because I am Santa; but I would like this message to reach everyone all over the world. I would like us all to consider our actions every single day when we purchase items, when we make anything to sell, and when we discard things.
Let’s work together to make the world healthier.
For now, please share this letter with everyone you know, please read it to your children. It’s up to us all together, to save the planet and still enjoy our time here!
HAPPY EARTH DAY TO ALL!
HO HO HO