American Legion Auxiliary

History

https://www.alaforveterans.org

American Legion Auxiliary Decades of

Making a Difference

The American Legion Auxiliary has been dedicated to serving veterans, military and their families for nearly 100 years. Auxiliary members exemplify Service Not Self through countless volunteer hours, programs, conferences and an increased presence in Washington, D.C. Although things have changed since the American Legion Auxiliary’s establishment in 1919, the one thing to remain the same is members’ unwavering commitment to honor those who serve. Watch the video to learn more about our history and why now is an exciting time to be part of the world’s largest women’s patriotic service organization.

What We Do

American Legion Auxiliary (ALA) members and volunteers step up to advance our mission of service to veterans, military and their families! Our annual volunteer service is worth nearly $2 billion! This past year alone, ALA members: Volunteered more than 10 million hours in mission service, with 5.8 million hours dedicated to serving veterans at home, in hospitals, and in shelters; and helped 865,200 active-duty military families. Raised and donated nearly $45 million for mission service, with $5.5 million raised from Poppy Program donations, $2 million awarded in scholarships, and $45 million spent aiding military families. Over the years, The American Legion Family has influenced considerable social change in America, won hundreds of benefits for veterans, helped military families through transition and produced many important programs for our country’s youth. We know that military service is a sacrifice for the whole family, so ALA members quietly look for ways to ease the burden—whatever it takes to get that family back on their feet physically, mentally, socially and vocationally. If we don’t have the resources, we connect military families with our partners who do. In honoring our veterans, one of our core values is to demonstrate and pass on respect for our country and our nation’s flag. We promote patriotic youth programs, most notably the American Legion Auxiliary Girls State and Girls Nation programs, held regionally and nationally, along with education programs, contests and scholarships in local school systems. Making our communities better places in which to live is another core value put into action by American Legion Auxiliary members every day across the country. Whether hosting a stand down to bring vital health and support services to homeless veterans, or coordinating a send-off or welcome-home event for a deployed military unit, ALA members are continuously at work in their communities, demonstrating the compassion and heart we have for those who serve our country and protect our freedoms. As we approach our centennial in 2019, ALA members take a great deal of pride in our accomplishments, but we know there is still important work ahead as new, young service members grow older. Won’t you step up and join us?

Our Organizational Structure

We categorize the nearly three-quarters of a million members who make up the national organization known as the American Legion Auxiliary into units, departments and divisions. And it is with great pride that we recognize it is the individual members that make us the largest women’s patriotic service organization in the world! See below for details on how our structure operates. Units: More than 8,000 This is a group of at least 10 individuals—and must be connected with an American Legion post. That requirement has to do with the way The American Legion was chartered by Congress. We also have foreign units in other parts of the world. Officers are elected annually by unit members and may include president, vice president, secretary, treasurer, chaplain, historian, and sergeant-at- arms (specific officers vary by unit). Committee chairmen are appointed annually by the incoming unit president and may include the following: Americanism, Auxiliary Emergency Fund, Cavalcade of Memories, Children & Youth, Community Service, Constitution & Bylaws, Education, Finance, ALA Girls State, Junior Activities, Leadership, Legislative, Membership, National Security, Past Presidents Parley, Poppy, Public Relations, and Veterans Affairs & Rehabilitation. Typically, the incoming unit president and her appointed chairmen work together to appoint committee members. This practice and specific chairmen appointed may vary by unit.

History

Founded in 1919, the American Legion Auxiliary is the world’s largest women's patriotic service organization. The American Legion Auxiliary’s mission is to support The American Legion and to honor the sacrifice of those who serve by enhancing the lives of our veterans, military, and their families, both at home and abroad. For God and country, we advocate for veterans, educate our citizens, mentor youth, and promote patriotism, good citizenship, peace and security. A Legacy of Service Not Self is Born A group of 20 officers who served in the American Expeditionary Forces in World War I were asked to suggest ideas on how to improve troop morale. One officer, Lt. Col. Theodore Roosevelt Jr., proposed an organization of veterans, which we know today as The American Legion. The original purpose of The Legion was to “preserve the memories and incidence of our association in the great war,” helping those who had served in foreign wars to reintegrate into their hometowns while still remaining connected to those with whom they had served abroad. The Legion served as a support group, a social club and an extended family for former servicemen. After two planning caucuses held by a committee of officers who had the confidence and respect of their military comrades, they designed a constitution to govern the group and set up headquarters in New York City to begin work on its programs of relief, employment and Americanism. history After the formation of The American Legion, a number of women's organizations wanted to become the official affiliation of The American Legion. The women who had served so faithfully during the trying days of the war wanted to continue to serve. After careful consideration, the committee agreed that a new organization should be made up of the women most closely associated with the men of the Legion, and that these women would serve with the Legion, in peace as they had in war. The committee decided to build a new organization from the ground up, so the Auxiliary could then carry forward the phases of Legion activities more suitably performed by women. In less than one year, 1,342 local units of the Women’s Auxiliary to The American Legion had been organized in more than 45 states. Auxiliary, American Legion. "About." American Legion Auxiliary. N.p., n.d. Web. 31 Mar. 2017. American Legion Auxiliary _____________________________________________________________ From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia Founded in 1919, the American Legion Auxiliary is the world’s largest women’s patriotic service organization. With a membership of 3/4 million, local American Legion Auxiliary units have a strong presence in more than 8,600 communities nationwide. American Legion Auxiliary members and volunteers serve veterans, military and their families through countless volunteer hours, programs and an increased presence in Washington, D.C. The American Legion Auxiliary’s mission, in the spirit of service not self, is to support The American Legion and to honor the sacrifice of those who serve. The American Legion Auxiliary has done just that for nearly 100 years. The idea for the American Legion came about when 20 officers who served in the American Expeditionary Forces (A. E. F.) were asked to suggest ideas on how to improve troop morale. One officer, U.S. Army Lieutenant Colonel Theodore Roosevelt, Jr., proposed an organization of veterans, which we know today as the American Legion. After its formation, a number of women's organizations wanted to become the official affiliation of the Legion. The women who had served so faithfully during the trying days of the war wanted to continue to serve. After careful consideration, the committee agreed that a new organization should be made up of the women most closely associated with the men of The Legion, and that these women would serve with the Legion, in peace as they had in war. The committee decided to build a new organization from the ground up, so the Auxiliary could then carry forward the phases of Legion activities more suitably performed by women. In less than one year, 1,342 local units of the Women’s Auxiliary to the American Legion had been organized in more than 45 states. "American Legion Auxiliary." Wikipedia. Wikimedia Foundation, 25 Mar. 2017. Web. 31 Mar. 2017.
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