Meets pressing community needs by mobilizing caring New Yorkers in volunteer service.

Ways to participate

Grant Wishes

Request a letter from a child, teen or senior and fulfill their holiday gift request. Select whether you would like to grant wishes as either an individual or a group. Remember, each letter comes with approximately a $40 commitment.

Donate to Winter Wishes

While gift giving is at the heart of the Winter Wishes, we cannot keep this program running without your financial support. Make a donation to Winter Wishes today!

Request Gifts

For Partner Agencies: As our organization continues to evolve in meeting our mission to connect New Yorkers to meaningful volunteer opportunities, it is our primary goal to deepen relationships with existing partners who work on other New York Cares programs throughout the year. For this reason and due to the volume of partners we work with on multiple programs, we will not be opening a general application for Winter Wishes this year. Instead, eligibility is now limited to partners who work with us on more than one program in a calendar year as well as select past Winter Wishes participants.

Community Partner Application Eligibilitymust meet 2 or more requirements 

  • Ongoing year-round volunteer programs through New York Cares
  • Agencies that host multiple corporate volunteer groups through New York Cares
  • Participation in annual event such as Coat Drive, New York Cares Day for Schools, New York Cares Day Spring
  • Past Winter Wishes organizations that received a “5” quality rating on their letters in 2016

Eligible Community Partners may submit requests for letters to be written by children (ages 4-12), teens (ages 13-18) and seniors (ages 65+). All letters must be written by the recipient of the gift. Gift requests should not exceed $40. Remember, applications are accepted on a first come, first served basis until program meets capacity.

If you do not meet the above criteria and would like to continue working with New York Cares, please submit an Additional Programming request(link is external) to discuss other ways we can provide volunteer services to your organization throughout the year. Additionally, if you would like to be added to a list of holiday gift referral organizations shared with volunteers (once all Winter Wishes gifts are granted), please email