The Auxiliary’s Community Service programs
are based on the premise that
no organization has a right to exist within the community
without giving something to that community in return.
Community service helps to make our communities better places in which to live. Each Unit should have a Community Service Chairman. Auxiliary members under the guidance of the Community Service Chairman study community needs, recommends projects to the Unit, raise funds and donate their time to accomplish specific objectives. Special attention is given to the selection of each project to ensure the work of other organizations is not duplicated. Auxiliary Units as a primary objective provide assistance on Community Service projects sponsored by American Legion Posts, as in almost every American Legion project there will be phases in which the Auxiliary can give effective help. The Auxiliary should cooperate with other organizations to implement practical, worthwhile projects for the benefit of the community, and their cooperation in projects initiated by the Auxiliary can be asked. The greatest achievement is made when in the interest and efforts of the entire community are enlisted in support of a project. It is the duty of the Unit Community Service Chairman to report the work to the Department Community Service Chairman.
Community Service embraces all activities for improvement of conditions of life in the community where the American Legion Auxiliary Unit is located. It has been a major activity of The American Legion and Auxiliary since 1926, and has resulted in the completion of a vast number of projects to make American communities better places in which to live.
Duplication of the efforts of other organizations must be avoided. Before selecting a project, the unit should make sure that no other local organization is at work in that field. Cooperate with other groups – do not compete with them. “Initiate, cooperate, but do not duplicate,” has long been the watchword of the American Legion Auxiliary in Community Service.
The selection of a Community Service project should be given very careful thought. A Unit will be fulfilling its obligation if it undertakes and completes one Community Service project each year. Initiate, if necessary, cooperate with The American Legion and other organizations where possible; but never duplicate the work of other organizations.
Go easy at first. Try small projects, carrying them to completion. Experience will teach the Unit the type of projects which the community will support and which are within the ability of the Unit to accomplish. Plan your projects – work your plan – publicize your results.