Samantha Schmidgall

353 E. Park Street, Apt 1
Du Quoin, IL 62832
618-790-4295

lavfwsamee@gmail.com

 

“Making Life Bearable for our Veterans”


 

The National Auxiliary Community Outreach Ambassador, Diane Pencak, states, “As we continue building on the VFW Auxiliary foundation, we have to find the ways and means to be more active and visible within our local communities.

How do we achieve that new goal?

As Auxiliary members, we almost all serve other organizations outside the Auxiliary circle through volunteering and now is the time to count the volunteer work that we are doing. Auxiliary Community Outreach IS volunteer work performed by an individual, a group of members, or the whole Auxiliary for the benefit of the community or its institutions.

Auxiliary Community Outreach can:

  • Be performed by people of any age, skill set, or ability level.
  • Benefit any group of people such as children, senior citizens, and those with disabilities.
  • Benefit animals, the environment, and public spaces.
  • Be done in communities of all types and sizes—rural, suburban, and urban.

We volunteer to make a difference in our community but we receive benefits such as:

  • Helping others
    • People of all ages and abilities have the opportunity to volunteer.
  • Learning new skills
    • Volunteering is renowned for skill development and is intended to promote goodness or to improve human quality of life.
  • Career advancement
    • Many employers look to employees who volunteer outside their normal job.
  • Increased confidence
    • Volunteering allows us to express our interests and excel in what we like and do best.
  • Meeting new people
    • You can participate and have a positive impact whether you live in a small rural community, suburb, or big city.
  • Fighting stress and depression
  • Developing a stronger ‘sense of purpose’
    • Volunteering often provides positive benefits for the volunteer as well as for the person, agency, or community served.
  • Personal growth
    • Volunteering is second nature for VFW Auxiliary members. It’s what we do!

Auxiliary Community Outreach gives us the opportunity to do more with local communities, schools, civic, faith-based, and youth organizations.  

We probably know someone who already volunteers with their local Rotary Club, Kiwanis Club, Boy Scouts, Girl Scouts, youth sports programs, after school clubs, or senior center.  Here are additional ways the Auxiliary Community Outreach Program can be implemented in our communities by volunteering:

  • Kids/Education: mentor students, tutor, volunteer at after school programs, performing arts programs, sports clubs, arts and crafts classes, Big Brother/Big Sister, etc.
  • Hunger/Homelessness: soup kitchens, food pantries, homeless shelters, farmers markets, backpack snack programs, toiletry care packages, Habitat for Humanity, etc.
  • Career/skills: GED tutoring, job coaching, mock interviews, business mentoring, resume assistance, etc.
  • Elderly: serve lunch to seniors, Meals on Wheels, senior dining club, pet therapy for seniors, yard and garden care (mowing, raking leaves, pruning bushes, etc.) housekeeping and laundry services, etc.
  • Health/Research: American Cancer Society, American Diabetes Association, Leukemia & Lymphoma Society, Autism Speaks, Relay for Life, Alzheimer’s Association, etc.
  • Nature: Organic greenhouse, community gardens, park maintenance, etc.
  • Animals: PAWS, local humane societies, animal rescue groups, etc.

Community Outreach and the VFW Auxiliary

While emphasis is placed on our core VFW and Auxiliary programs, we realize Auxiliary members and Auxiliaries also participate with other community organizations.  Members and Auxiliaries can now report and be recognized for such community work through the Auxiliary Community Outreach Program.

It is very important that at the beginning of your Auxiliary’s program year a motion is made on the floor (during your meeting) that when a member(s) volunteers their time for a civic program, school program, youth program, etc., and they are representing the VFW Auxiliary, the member should turn in their hours served to be reported for Auxiliary Community Outreach. Motion should be recorded in the meeting minutes and approved before the member or Auxiliary participate in a project.

When an Auxiliary member, group of members, or the entire Auxiliary volunteers for an organization outside our own, it should be considered Auxiliary Community Outreach if the project was approved by the Auxiliary and recorded in the meeting minutes prior to the project.  Examples include:

  • Participation in walks that benefit other organizations (Race for the Cure, Walk to End Alzheimer’s, Light the Night Walk, Walk MS, Heart Walk, etc.)
  • Working with local police on child ID kits.
  • Working with firefighters on fire safety and prevention.
  • Working with EMTs to host CPR training.
  • Hosting a blood drive.
  • Working with parks and recreation departments to plant trees, adopt-a-park initiatives and develop community art installations.
  • Handing out food at soup kitchens.
  • Delivering food for Meals on Wheels.

When we participate in Auxiliary Community Outreach we become better citizens of the communities in which we live.

PLEASE NOTE:

Auxiliary Community Outreach is for projects NOT AFFILIATED with VFW or VFW AUXILIARY programs.

Volunteer work that is performed for the benefit of the Post or Auxiliary is NOT considered community service.  Examples of projects that do not qualify include:

  • Repairs or maintenance to the Post home.
  • Cooking or serving a meal for a Post or Auxiliary fundraiser.
  • “Buddy” Poppy distribution.
  • VFW or Auxiliary meetings, conventions, conferences or schools of instruction.
  • Church activities for one specific congregation and not the entire community (e.g. usher, elder, deacon, minister, etc.)

It’s time for the VFW Auxiliary to reveal itself to their community!  Take an active volunteer role in community events and affairs. Host an Open House to welcome your local neighbors in to see what the VFW and VFW Auxiliary are about. The more people hear or read about the VFW and VFW Auxiliary, the more interest you’ll generate for an event.  This program opens the door to other opportunities to recruit members, get students involved with our scholarship contests, or people who want to help veterans and their families.


AWARDS

Department Awards

AWARDS FOR AUXILIARIES

  1. Citation to each Auxiliary that is reported in the Auxiliary Community Outreach Program by December 31, 2020.
  2. Award and citation for the most outstanding Auxiliary Community Outreach program. Auxiliaries must send entry form to the Department Auxiliary Community Outreach Chairman by March 31, 2021.

AWARDS FOR DISTRICTS

  1. Citation to each District President if all Auxiliaries in their District are reported in the program by December 31, 2020.
  2. Award and citation to the District Chairman with the best promotion of the Auxiliary Community Outreach program. Report must be received by the Department Chairman within 30 days of presentation but must be received by March 31, 2021.

National Awards

AWARDS FOR AUXILIARIES

  1. Most outstanding Auxiliary Community Outreach Program.
    • Citation to every Auxiliary that participates in a community event. Criteria and entry form (required) available at vfwauxiliary.org/resources.  Auxiliaries must send the entry form to their Department Auxiliary Community Outreach Chairman by March 31, 2021.
    • The Department Auxiliary Community Outreach Chairman must send a copy of all submitted entry forms to National Headquarters by April 30. 2021.
    • Citations will be mailed directly to participating Auxiliaries from National Headquarters.
  2. Citation and $25 to one Auxiliary in each of the four Conferences with the most outstanding Auxiliary Community Outreach Program.

The Department Auxiliary Community Outreach chairman must sign and send a copy of the completed Department-winning entry form to the National Auxiliary Community Outreach Ambassador by April 30, 2021 for judging.

AWARDS FOR DEPARTMENTS AND DEPARTMENT CHAIRMAN         

  1. Citation to each Department Auxiliary Community Outreach Chairman for participation in the program.
  2. $25 VFW Store Gift Certificate to the Department Auxiliary Community Outreach Chairman in each of the 10 program Divisions for the best promotion of the Auxiliary Community Outreach Program.

Outstanding Performance Award in each of the 10 Program Divisions based on criteria listed on page 5 and for the promotion of program goals on page 14.


Resources

We have provided a place here for you to download all of the information that we distribute to you through our Program Book and Bi-Monthly Chairmen’s Bulletins.  You will need Adobe Reader, it is a Free program and can be downloaded here  Get Adobe

2020-2021 Auxiliary Community Outreach Program

2020-2021 Auxiliary Community Outreach Printable Report Form (Click here for Online Report)

Auxiliary Community Outreach Award for Auxiliaries No. 1 Entry Form • 2020-2021 Program Year

National Auxiliary Community Outreach Program 2020-2021

BULLETIN

bulletin #1 aux. comm. outreach