HOUSTON—8/28/13—American Legion Auxiliary Unit 221 in Tehachapi, Calif., was one of only five units to receive the National President’s Award for Excellence by American Legion Auxiliary National President Peggy Thomas. Awards were presented in August at the American Legion Auxiliary’s 93rd National Convention in Houston.
The National President’s Award for Excellence is presented annually to American Legion Auxiliary units that represent the “best of the best” in planning and implementation of the American Legion Auxiliary’s mission. Recipients are selected based on applications that address the unit’s achievements in Auxiliary national goals and objectives in at least three Auxiliary programs.
Unit 221 successfully implemented multiple community-based programs over the past year. As part of a Veterans Affairs & Rehabilitation Program activity, they started a “Feed Our Veterans Project.” Unit 221 discovered that 95 percent of enrolled students at a local training school were veterans all trying to learn a new career so they could get into the workforce. Unit 221 also learned the students rarely had enough money to eat lunch during the day and were going home to an empty refrigerator at night. Unit 221 provided food to the veterans as well as toiletries and cleaning supplies; spent more than $5,000 to feed the nearly 300 students; and worked with each student to explain their GI Bill benefits, help the veterans get financial aid for classes and put them in touch with the local employment office and local veterans resources.
American Legion Auxiliary members have dedicated themselves for nearly a century to meeting the needs of our nation’s veterans, military and their families both here and abroad. They volunteer millions of hours yearly, with a value of nearly $2 billion. As part of the world’s largest women’s patriotic service organization, Auxiliary volunteers across the country also step up to honor veterans and military through annual scholarships and with ALA Girls State programs, teaching high school juniors to be leaders grounded in patriotism and Americanism. To learn more about the Auxiliary’s mission or to volunteer, donate or join, visit www.ALAforVeterans.org.
###Contact: Stacy Poca: (317) 569-4565 or spoca@ALAforVeterans.org
"Volunteering is the ultimate exercise in democracy. You vote in elections once a year, but when you volunteer, you vote every day about the kind of community you want to live in."—Marjorie Moore, Belleville, Ill.