INDIANAPOLIS—American Legion Auxiliary (ALA) North Strand Unit 186 in Little River, SC, was one of only five units, out of more than 8,000, to receive the National President’s Award for Excellence by American Legion Auxiliary National President Janet Jefford. Awards were presented September 2, at the American Legion Auxiliary’s 95th National Convention in Baltimore, Md.
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 ALA national goals and objectives in at least three ALA programs.
At a time when membership organizations of all types are struggling with membership, ALA Unit 186 keeps bringing people in. They understand that working as a team, being inclusive rather than exclusive, and building brand recognition in the community is the key to membership growth and success. They ordered badges, wore ALA shirts at all community events and proudly displayed their “Honoring Their Service” buttons, which bear pictures of loved ones who served in the U.S. military.
ALA Unit 186 also encouraged other small organizations to join them in their Backpack Buddies program, which sends underprivileged elementary school children home with a backpack filled with supplies. “Asking other organizations to join in their unit’s project helped them increase visibility in the community and help more than 900 children in need!,” said 2014-2015 South Carolina Department President Anne Parker.
“Women of ALA Unit 186,” said Central Division National Vice President Laura Mosby, “you truly are a model of the American Legion Auxiliary motto, ‘Service Not Self,’ and I thank you for teaching the lessons of civility.”
About the American Legion Auxiliary: American Legion Auxiliary members nationwide have dedicated themselves for nearly a century to meeting the needs of our country’s veterans, military and their families both here and abroad. They volunteer millions of hours yearly, with a value of more than $3 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.