The American Legion Auxiliary supports military families by easing the burden of the cost of their children’s education through various scholarship opportunities and by participating in community service projects in local communities that focus on veterans, military families, or children. The Auxiliary also supports military families by providing learning opportunities and instructional resources for important things every good citizen should know, such as learning about the Constitution and flying the flag on patriotic holidays. Learn more about ALA Scholarships Learn more about flag etiquette from The American Legion Learn more about “a day on, not a day off” for service
From coast to coast, members of the American Legion Auxiliary leave a lasting impact on veterans, active-duty military, military families, and their communities on a daily basis. We share just a few of the stories about how ALA members continue their legacy of making a difference.
If you’ve watched the news, listened to broadcasts, or perused news articles lately, you’ve likely noticed the attention that the American flag is receiving. From stories about misuse of the flag to comments made by the president on the subject of flag desecration, the media coverage, if anything, has helped bring to light the importance of understanding how to properly respect our nation’s flag and the freedom it represents.
Patriotism, the love and devotion to one’s country, is one of the many characteristics that make America a wonderful nation. As defined by Webster’s 1828 English Dictionary, it is also the passion to serve one’s country, either in defending it from invasion, or protecting its rights and maintaining its laws and institutions.
Many of our nation’s veterans need assistance around their home. Elderly or limited-mobility veterans may not be able to take care of all their housekeeping requirements and would appreciate some extra help.Read more
In the wake of 9/11, three military caregivers share how they’re discovering ways to cope with a new way of life and their unique challenges.Read more
After 15 years, American Legion Auxiliary members recall the terrorist attacks that changed our nation but helped us resolve to work harder on our mission to serve veterans, the military, and their families in a post-9/11 world.
American patriotism is a fundamental value of the American Legion Auxiliary. Americanism programs teach respect for our country and our nation’s flag. Patriotism is learned by seeing it in action. Patriotism is rooted in our character by practicing it throughout our lives. The Auxiliary creates opportunities that all Americans can do to show our respect and set positive examples of living as grateful, patriotic citizens. The Auxiliary provides learning opportunities and instructional resources for important things every good citizen should know, such as learning about the Constitution and flying the flag on patriotic holidays. They also fold pocket flags to send to our troops overseas and present flags to local schools and businesses. The Auxiliary is a member of the Citizens Flag Alliance and advocates for a constitutional amendment to protect the flag by supporting federal legislation and encouraging other people to do so.
To help our country’s most promising young citizens learn firsthand the principles of our free republic guided by the principles of democracy, the Auxiliary promotes many patriotic youth programs, including the Auxiliary-sponsored Americanism Essay Contest, which is conducted in local school systems. We believe promoting a spirit of patriotism by teaching about it develops lifelong respect for what we hold dear – our country and her flag.Download Americanism Essay Cover SheetLearn more about the Citizens Flag Alliance
Making our communities better places in which to live is something Auxiliary members strive for each and every day across this country. Whether it is 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, Auxiliary members are continuously at work in their communities, demonstrating the compassion and heart we have for those who serve our country and give so much. Community Service projects focus on enhancing the quality of life for veterans and their families.
A major outreach program of the Auxiliary since 1926, Community Service also demonstrates our longstanding commitment to supporting the work of American Legion posts and other organizations in providing assistance with blood drives, first aid and CPR training, child safety programs, support for women in shelters, and disaster and emergency preparedness programs. All community projects point toward improving life for our veterans and their families, and the most important Auxiliary Community Service projects involve making donations to and supporting shelters for homeless veterans.
In recent years, the Auxiliary has partnered with the Corporation for National and Community Service to make the Martin Luther King Jr. holiday – the third Monday in January – “a day on, not a day off” for service. Units and departments are encouraged to plan special projects that focus on veterans, military families, or children as part of this national day of service.Learn more about “a day on, not a day off” for service
The American Legion Auxiliary believes education is vital to democracy, and that investing time and money to educate our youth is literally an investment in America’s future. Our Education Program involves fostering learning for children in our own communities, with our main focus on the children of military and veterans.
We know veterans’ sacrifices are the reason we live in freedom. Easing the burden of the cost of their children’s education is one way we can express our gratitude to them. To that purpose, the Auxiliary supports a number of scholarship programs. These include the Children of Warriors National Presidents’ Scholarship, awarded annually to 15 outstanding students who are the children and grandchildren of veterans; the Non-Traditional Student Scholarship, awarded annually to five students who are members of The American Legion, Auxiliary, or Sons of The American Legion; and the Spirit of Youth Scholarship, awarded annually to one Junior Auxiliary member in each of the Auxiliary’s five national divisions. Units and departments are encouraged to publicize the availability of these scholarship programs in their communities and establish new scholarships at the local level.
Educating our communities about the sacrifices of our military is another goal of the Auxiliary. Units and departments are encouraged to participate in our organization’s national education initiatives and those of The American Legion. One of these initiatives, Veterans in Community Schools, is an effort to bring history to life by having local veterans speak to students about their real-life experiences in the military. Other initiatives include collaborating with Family Readiness Groups assisting with special projects for National Guard families, military base schools, and donating school supplies to children in need.Learn more about ALA Scholarships
Auxiliary members step up and reach out to help military families during deployments in very practical ways, such as assisting with their needs for child care and lawn work or by providing a listening ear to a spouse. Members do helpful things such as collecting coupons and sending them to overseas commissaries, hosting send-off and welcome-home events for our troops, providing them with pocket flags, and showing the gratitude of our nation by providing military families with Blue Star and Gold Star Banners. Auxiliary units are encouraged to partner with other organizations that serve the military, such as local USO affiliates and ROTC/JROTC units.
Auxiliary members also assist our communities in times of natural and manmade disasters through Community Emergency Response Team (CERT) courses. These trainings prepare members to act as an emergency response resource in times of natural disasters such as floods, hurricanes, and blizzards, as well as during manmade disasters. The Auxiliary’s National Security Program works collaboratively with the FEMA Individual and Community Preparedness Division, in keeping with a standing agreement.