You can help make the holiday season a little brighter, for military men and women away from their families this Christmas.

Christmas cards and care packages addressed to Canadian soldiers can be dropped off at any Canada Post location.

Until Jan. 10, they’ll be mailed free of charge.

General letters can be addressed to: ‘Any Canadian Armed Forces Member’

They can be mailed to: PO Box 5140, Stn Forces, Belleville ON, K9N 5W6,

People can drop letters off at the Military Family Resource Centre (MFRC) at 1575 Military Row in Lazo, and they’ll be mailed for free.

For rules and guidelines, click here.

19 Wing Comox deployment coordinator, Karen Ferland, said getting an unexpected card or care package makes a big difference in lifting the spirits of a deployed member.

“It’s really nice and they really appreciate any gesture, whether small or big, and it really makes a difference to them,” Ferland said. “You have to keep in mind, they are being posted overseas and they are away from their friends and family over the Christmas holidays which is one of the bigger holidays. Any gesture is appreciated.”

Ferland said the Christmas spirit can spill over into the new year.

“After Jan. 10 if you are in the community, you are more than welcome to drop off a care package at the local military family resource centre, and we will mail it out free of charge,” Ferland said.

“Christmas is a peak season, we all know that, however we have members of 19 Wing Comox deployed throughout the year. Yes, it’s wonderful to receive a care package over the holidays but they appreciate to have care packages all year round.”

Ferland said Christmas can be a challenging time for military families with dads and moms away for the holidays.

“It’s really tough for them, and especially those families that have young children, because they don’t always understand the concept of time, ” she said. “They just understand that daddy or mommy are away right now, and they’re not quite sure when they’re coming back. It’s hard on the family, especially at this time of year when  daddy or mommy may not be here for Christmas, or they’re trying to Skype in, or time changes.”