11447 IL Route 125
Beardstown IL 62618
“Making Life Bearable for our Veterans”
The Veterans and Family Support Program has a mission of giving something back to our veterans. Every veteran has sacrificed a part of his or her life to keep the American dream a reality. it is our obligation as an auxiliary to assist those who have served whenever possible. We can also help their families cope with the stress caused by deployment, physical and emotional injuries received during active duty, and other struggles related to being in the military. The National Veterans Service and The Veterans and Military Support Program are two parts of this program with distinct purposes for supporting our veterans, active military, and their families.
National Veterans Service (NVS) works to ensure that all of our veterans, service members, and their families obtain the benefits that they deserve. This VFW sponsored network works nationwide to provide Service Officers who help veterans navigate the Veterans Affairs system. There is no cost for this service.
They assist all veterans (VFW members or not) in filing claims for disability compensation, rehabilitation and educational programs, pension and death benefits, and employment and training programs. They can also assist veterans in receiving access to health care, medical evaluations, and treatment for drug or alcohol dependency. Your donations are what keeps this network in operation.
To get reported in this portion of the program make a donation to NVS online at vfw.org/ways-to-help or donate by mail with funds earmarked for National Veterans Service:
VFW National Headquarters
406 W 34th ST., 11th Floor
Kansas City M0 64111
After making your donation, report it to your Chairman. Donations of any amount are acceptable.
The Veterans and Military Support Program (VMS) contains three programs initiated by the VFW. They were created to serve our active duty and recently discharged military.
Military Assistance Program (MAP) provides financial assistance to Posts, Districts, and Departments that are sponsoring military send offs, homecomings, or other get—togethers like baby showers for military wives. lt will also assist with postage for Posts and Auxiliaries that are participating in Adopt-a-Unit. Guidelines for applying for these funds can be received from the VFW Veterans and Military Support Office at 816-756-3390.
Unmet Needs provides grants of up to $1,500 to meet expenses for those actively serving in the military. It was developed to help military families through a financial crisis. Military families could qualify for a grant to help pay for necessities such as rent, car repairs, utilities, and food. To learn more about the program visit vfw.org/assistance/financial-grants.
VFW “Sports Clips Help a Hero Scholarship” awards scholarships of up to $5,000 to qualifying veterans and service members to help them complete their educational goals without incurring excessive debt. More information can be found at www.vfw.org/assistance/student-veterans-support.
All of these programs are meant to help our military and their families with the day to day trials of living in a military family and adjusting when the soldier returns from deployment.
To make donations to VMS donate online at vfw.org/ways-to-help, selecting Veterans and Military Support, and contribute. Donations by mail should be sent to
VFW National Headquarters
Attn: Veterans and Military Support
406 W 36th ST., 9th Floor
Kansas City MO 64111
When you have made your donation, report it to your Chairman. All donation amounts are accepted.
Other projects and donations that your auxiliary makes toward the improvement of the lives of our veterans and active military should be reported under Other Veterans and Family Services. This could include (but is not limited to) help with a military burial detail for a veteran, funeral dinners for a veteran or a family member of a veteran, Memorial Day and Veterans Day Services and dinners, sending packages to active duty military or their families, grocery boxes donated to needy veterans, transportation to an appointment, or helping an elderly veteran replace a worn American flag.
Your auxiliary members should also educate themselves about the tragedy of the staggering amount of suicides of military personnel and veterans. 20 veterans commit suicide every day. Know the warning signs of suicide. Educate the public about those warning signs. Have access to the veteran’s crisis hotline phone number (add 1-800-273-8255 to your cell phone). Wear the blue teardrop pin or sticker (the VFW Auxiliary’s symbol of military suicide awareness), and share your reason for wearing it. If you participate in any type of suicide awareness program, which would include your local and district meetings, or one involving the public, please report this under other Veterans and Family Support. You can use these resources in your efforts to promote suicide awareness. These groups are trying to change the stigma of mental health issues, improve research, and promote treatment options for those affected.
The Campaign to Change Direction: change direction.org
Give An Hour: giveanhour.org One Mind: onemind.org
The Elizabeth Dole Foundation: elizabethdolefoundation.org
Patients Like Me: patientslikeme.com/join/vfw
Help Heal Veterans: (therapeutic craft kits) healvets.org
Veterans Voice Writing Project: veteransvoices.org
The 2020-2021 Veterans and Family Support National Ambassador, LaQuetta McCartor, has shared a story from her childhood that will help bring awareness of some of the issues of living in a military family. As a child she remembers being hungry because her parents did not always have enough money to feed the family. Her father was in the Army and they struggled financially. The high cost of living in many areas of the country requires that members of the nation’s military apply for food stamps or other financial assistance. She would like to see the Auxiliaries of the VFW step up and provide assistance to help combat this issue.
This year our National President’s Special Project is: Stars, Stripes, and Support: Combating Food Insecurity Among Our Nation’s Military Service Personnel and Their Families. Donations for this project go to VFW National Headquarters and should be earmarked for Unmet Needs-Hunger. Citations will be awarded to all auxiliaries that donate a minimum of $25 between July 1,2020 and April 30, 2021.
Support For Veteran and Military Caregivers: Caregiver for a veteran is a role that many parents, spouses, children, and other family members and friends have taken. The VA Caregiver Support Line is answered by licensed professionals who can connect callers with several different services. That phone number is 855-260-3274. More information is available at caregiver.va.gov. If you are now in the role of veteran caregiver consider using these resources for support. As an auxiliary, you can offer your support to those in this role. Host a luncheon, mail a thank you card, send a gift card for personal care, or give them a phone call to let them know that you appreciate them for what they are doing for our veterans.
National Family Caregivers Month is observed each November and Month of the Military Caregiver is observed each May. If you know someone in this role, please take the time to show your appreciation. And be sure to report that under Other Veterans and Family Support.
Education, Promotion, and Publicity When we take time to educate the public in our communities about our many important programs that help veterans and their families, we create an opportunity to join with other organizations. Promote the Veterans & Military Support Programs to local civic, faith based and school related groups. Publicize what your auxiliary is doing to support our veterans. Newspapers, social media and speaking at local functions are just some of the ways you can educate your communities on those projects; and encourage other groups to work with the auxiliary and the VFW. Together we can succeed in the fight to keep our veterans and military lives physically and mentally whole.
- A citation to every auxiliary that is reported in all three parts of the program by December 31, 2020.
- A citation to every auxiliary that gives a suicide awareness workshop to the public or in an auxiliary meeting. Report must be submitted to Chairman by March 31, 2021.
- An award to the Auxiliary chairman with the best promotion of the VFS program presented to the public through media (newspapers, radio, TV, etc.) or presentations given to a civic, educational or other organization. Report must be submitted to Chairman by March 31, 2021.
- A citation to every district that is 100% reported in each part of the program by December 31, 2020.
- An award to the District Chairman with the best promotion of the VFS program. Report must be submitted to Chairman by March 31, 2021.
- A citation will be mailed to every Auxiliary, District, and Department that donates a minimum of $25 to the VFW Foundation earmarked for Unmet Needs-Hunger between July 1, 2020 and April 30, 2021. There will be 5 levels: $1,000 or more Platinum; $500-$999 Diamond; $250-$499 Gold; $100-$249 Silver; $25-$99 Bronze. Donations are cumulative and one citation will be awarded for the highest donation level achieved, after May 1, 2021.
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 Department Veterans and Family Support Report (click here for online reporting)
- NVS info sheet
- Unmet Needs Donation Form
- UNMET Needs Eligibility Criteria
- MAP Grant Procedures Please contact NMS at NMS@vfw.org or call 816/756-3390 for assistance.
- VFS Resource Rack Card