Writing letters for Girls Love Mail is a little different than writing to a loved one or friend. Why? Because the letters go out through hospital cancer centers and we don’t know much about each letter recipient. To ensure your letter(s) is the most beneficial, please follow these Letter Writing Tips and Guidelines.
Letter Writing Guidelines
Hand-Write your Letter
Your letter must be hand-written. You’re doing more than writing a letter, you’re sending a hand-made gift.
Avoid Death, Bad Language, and Religious Convictions
The goal is to help each recipient regardless of race, religion, age, type of treatment, or cancer stage. For this reason, we are unable to hand out letters that are not universally appropriate.
DEATH: It may be difficult for someone newly diagnosed to hear about others who have died from cancer or other diseases. You can certainly mention your loved ones without necessarily sharing the outcome. For example, “My grandmother fought breast cancer and she liked to wear a different wig every day.”
LANGUAGE: In our modern age, there are lots of popular phrases about breast cancer. But as a non-profit who works with hospital cancer centers, we have to keep it clean. So along with banning use of the really bad words (you know the ones), the following terms/words are also banned:
– Hell (ex: Breast Cancer is hell.)
– Cancer Sucks (Yes, but may be offensive.)
– Kick Cancer’s Butt (We’re cautious.)
– Dirty or off-color jokes
– Quotes with banned words/phrases
RELIGION: We are unable to hand out letters that are not universally appropriate. We encourage you to share your experiences and tell the reader you are thinking of them; however, please refrain from religious references and other non-inclusive wording such as; quoting scriptures, telling a letter recipient how/who they should worship, or other religious overtures. This also applies to pre-printed cards. If you’d like to say “I’m praying for you” once in your letter that would be fine.
Greeting, Signature, and Date
Start your letter is with “Dear Friend” or “Dear Sister.” We encourage you to sign your first name and last initial (Gina M.). For children, please include the age or grade level on the letter. Please do NOT date your letters or reference holidays/seasons. It may be 6-8 weeks before your letter is handed to a recipient. Avoiding dates and holiday references ensures your letter will still be “fresh” when it arrives.
Stationery and Envelopes
Feel free to use any note card, stationery, postcard, or other paper of your choosing that fits or folds into our special GLM Envelope measuring 4.75” x 6.5” (announcement size) for bundled delivery to each participating center. Because we use our own envelopes you are welcome to keep any envelopes that may have come with your stationery. You can also download our free custom Girls Love Mail stationery. Download File