Holiday is no day off for American Legion Auxiliary members(1)

  • INDIANAPOLIS—1/16/12—American Legion Auxiliary members and staff around the country will join hundreds of thousands of Americans on Monday to make the Martin Luther King Jr. holiday a day on, not a day off, by serving others in the spirit of the late civil rights leader.

    The Indianapolis-based Auxiliary is asking its more than 800,000 members to focus on service projects to help veterans, active-duty military and their families. Local units and state departments have been planning for weeks to reach as many people as possible.

    In Delaware, Auxiliary members from around the state will meet at American Legion Post 28 in Millsboro to assemble and distribute 250 Buddy Baskets for homeless veterans transitioning into new housing. Besides supplies, they’ve collected more than $3,000 in cash donations. Joining them will be members of The American Legion, Sons of The American Legion and American Legion Riders as well as volunteers from churches, schools, nonprofits and veterans shelters, making it a true community effort.

    In Los Angeles, Jackie Robinson American Legion Auxiliary Unit 252 will begin its day of service by marching in the local Martin Luther King Day parade, led by the unit’s award-winning color guard. Members also will invite the community to help serve meals to veterans and thank them for their service. And in Las Vegas, Auxiliary Unit 14 will collect money to help the Fisher House Foundation build a new home where families of veterans can stay at no charge while their loved ones are deployed or being treated at a Veterans Affairs facility nearby.

    On past Martin Luther King Jr. holidays, American Legion Auxiliary members have worked at veterans job fairs and invited friends to volunteer at VA hospitals. Junior American Legion Auxiliary members – those age 18 and younger – have stuffed backpacks with toys, school supplies and letters for children of deployed military members.

    Founded in 1919, the American Legion Auxiliary is the world’s largest patriotic women’s service organization. Its units maintain a strong presence in more than 9,500 communities nationwide and carry out its mission to serve veterans, service members and their families through hundreds of outreach programs every year.

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