Volunteers transform e-mails into handwritten snail mail

Tuesday, August 9, 2011 - 11:18am

There once was a time not that long ago when people communicated though a thing called "The Letter." Ivan Cash has nostalgia for the old ways or at least what he's heard of them.

Ivan Cash says "I feel like it's a really fast paced world that we live in where everyone is connected all the time myself including myself."

so Cash decided to slow things down. He launched a project called snailmailmyemail.org.

People can send him an email of up to 100 words, and his team of volunteers will hand write an actual letter and mail it to the recipient.

Ivan says "I don't think its an ideal way of having other people write letters for you, but it is a way of easily allowing people to experience that feeling you get when you receive a letter."

The volunteers cover the postage since launching the month-long project in mid-July cash and his team have sent 2,500 letters across the globe.

Ivan says "I think that the success of this project, to me, shows how receptive people are to going back to a physical, tangible slowed-down alternative."

The request includes plenty of love letters, an occasional poem, even a Dear John letter. The simplest message comes to life with a personal touch whether it's a doodle or a little lip service.

Volunteer Amy Foote says "it's fun to be able to put your own personal touch on somebody else's personal thoughts I guess."

The project even inspiring some volunteers to dust off the old handwriting skills.

Volunteer Andy Dao says "I think one time I had a class in college where the assignment was to write a letter, and I don't think I even did that."

Ivan says "we've definitely gotten letters from parents to their infant children, saying 'hey this might be the only snail mail you get.'"

Cash hopes the project will remind people of the excitement of getting something in the mail that isn't a bill a physical message that means more than mere words could ever say.

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