A letter written to Santa by a 7-year-old boy living in a shelter has gone viral for the most heartbreaking of reasons...

Now, every child deserves a magical Christmas.

It's the time for family, copious amounts of food and, of course, plenty of presents.

Most of us look back on our childhood Christmasses with nothing but fondness...

Because let's face it, Christmas is the best when you're young and full of faith in Santa Claus, isn't it?

But it's a heartbreaking reality that, for many children, Christmas isn't quite so magical.

There are a staggering number of children living in poverty or in dangerous homes here in the U.S so, for them, Christmas can be a stressful and frightening time.

Many children have to go without the novelty of presents on Christmas Day...

And, in even more heartbreaking scenarios, some children don't have a home of their own.

Many families fleeing domestic abuse find themselves living in homeless shelters...

Which, of course, is never an ideal environment for children, especially over the festive period.

Well, this week, a little boy living in a homeless shelter with his mom wrote a desperate letter to Santa...

And it was quick to go viral.

Of course, people have been left utterly heartbroken by the letter...

The 7-year-old, known only as Blake, is believed to be staying in a domestic violence shelter in Texas.

His mom found the letter he had written to Santa in his backpack and decided to share it with the staff at the shelter they were taking refuge in - SafeHaven of Tarrant County - its president and CEO, Kathryn Jacob, told CNN.

The shelter shared a photo of his letter on social media...

Noting they changed the boy's name to Blake for his family's safety. In the letter, the child can be seen asking Santa for chapter books, a dictionary, a compass, and a watch.

But the rest of his letter is utterly devastating.

He wrote: "We had to leave our house. Dad was mad. We had to do all the chores. Dad got everything he wanted. Mom said it was time to leave and she would take us to a safer place where we don't have to be scared... I'm still nervous. I don't want to talk to the other kids. Are you going to come this Christmas? We don't have any of our stuff here."

He then asked for a new dad.

"I also want a very very very good dad. Can you do that too?"

On the heartbreaking letter, Kathryn Jacob said:

"Blake's story is like every story we see - the problem is so pervasive." However, since the letter went viral last year, the staff at the shelter have provided that all-important update.

Writing on Facebook, the shelter explained:

"You may remember Blake from last December. He and his mom were staying in our shelter, and along with a few small items, he asked Santa for a very good dad. Blake is 8 now, and he and his mom are doing great - even through the pandemic." You can see the original letter above. For more heartwarming Christmas stories, keep scrolling to read about the couple who have replied to children's letters to needy children for years...