The holiday season can be a difficult time for New York’s vulnerable children. To provide some holiday cheer to these youth , NYC Service is pleased to organize the 7th annual Secret Snowflake. Secret Snowflake is the Mayor’s Office annual holiday gift-giving initiative, which mobilizes mayoral and private sector employees to answer letters from youth in-need requesting holiday gifts. Through this initiative, our office has helped to ensure youth in-need are able to have a festive holiday season, helping them to receive joyous gifts– including board games, cards, books, movies, toys; and also crucial necessities, such as clothing, shoes and coats for the winter. Over the last 6 years, Secret Snowflake has helped to provide over 13,700 holiday gifts to over 9,000 youth


How Secret Snowflake works:

  • Agency partners collect letters from New Yorkers in need, such as families experiencing homelessness.

  • NYC Services provides your business with letters to answer, as well as materials to organize and engage employees in gift giving. Businesses confirm participation by Fall 2021

  • Business employees collect gifts in person or mail gifts to city agencies by early December 2021 

  • City agencies distribute the gifts directly to youth in-need- Just in time for the holidays!

Who receives the gifts?

  • Secret Snowflake letters are written by or on the behalf of youth ages 0-18 who receive social services from the City– including youth who are in the foster care system, shelter system, students in temporary housing, and children being raised by kinship caregivers.

City Agency Partners

  • Our City agency partners include: the Administration for Children’s Services (ACS), Department of Homeless Services (DHS), the Human Resource Agency (HRA), the Mayor’s Office to End Domestic and Gender Based Violence (ENDGBV), Department for the Aging (DFTA)., and the Department of Veterans' Service (DVS)

 If your business would like to participate, please sign up by completing the Secret Snowflake Sign Up Form. no later than Friday, October 7th. 

For more information, contact Maeve Ryan at