In its ninth year, the American Legion Auxiliary Foundation awarded $67,821 in grants to 14 organizations through its Veteran Projects Fund and third-party sub grants. Grants from the Veteran Projects Fund addressed specific, emergent needs by an American Legion Auxiliary (ALA) entity that honors the sacrifice of those who serve by enhancing the lives of our veterans, military, and their families, both at home and abroad. Third-party sub grants support (ALA) units, districts/counties, or departments that have identified a source for grant funding from a foundation or corporation that requires the recipient to be a 501(c)(3). The ALA Foundation can serve as the recipient. The ALA Foundation in turn, sub grants to the unit, district/county, or department according to the terms and conditions of the grantor. Sub grants of third-party grants must support ALA’s mission.

Following is a brief summary of the grants awarded for 2016:

The ALA Department of Connecticut was awarded $3,000 for its project, “Clothing Label Maker.” This grant provided a clothing label maker that allowed veterans’ clothing to be clearly identified, minimizing the fear of their personal items becoming lost in the laundry, improving the veterans’ health at the Connecticut State Veterans Home in Rocky Hill, Conn.

The ALA Bataan Unit 0004 of New Mexico was awarded $8,470 for its project, “Outdoor Respite for Fort Baynard State Veterans Home.” This grant provided a place for veterans to go outside with protection from the sun, which is critically important because of their fragile skin and sensitivity to sun exposure caused by medications in the warm climate of Santa Clara, N.M.

The ALA Eugene M. Connor Unit 193 was awarded $1,600 for its project, “Cathy’s House Therapeutic Garden.” This grant provided residents at Cathy’s House an eight-bed, permanent, supportive/transitional housing program designed for women veterans, a bench, equipment, and permanent plants, trees, shrubs and a small shed to house the gardening supplies for a therapeutic garden in Winchendon, Mass.

The ALA Department of Illinois was awarded $2,752 for its project, “Child-Friendly Areas in Waiting Room.” This grant provided a book and magazine rack, table and chairs, and an activity cube for each of the 13 waiting rooms at the VA Illiana Health Care System, giving children a place to play while enabling veterans to concentrate on the medical teams’ instructions and to focus on healing.

The ALA Department of California was awarded $8,334 for its project, “Children’s Learning Center project at Women Veterans ADVANCE Center at Cabrillo Villages,” in Long Beach, Calif. This grant provided supplies: computers and programs, iPads, camera, printers, microphones, headphones, art easels, instruments, bookshelves for a room designed for rebuilding parent/children relationships through creativity, team homework, play, job searching and resume building. The ALA Department of California matched funds with the ALA Foundation at 50 percent.

The ALA Department of Nebraska was awarded $3,116 for its project, “NuStep Physical Therapy Equipment for Norfolk Veterans Home.” This grant provided residents at Norfolk Veterans Home in Norfolk, Neb., exercise on a more frequent basis, giving them more mobility and overall better quality of life.

The ALA Department of Mexico was awarded $1,200 for its project, “Music and memory.” This grant provided personalized and therapeutic music to the veterans residing at the new Geri-Psych 10-bed ward at Fort Bayard State Veterans Home in in Santa Clara, N.M.

The ALA Department of North Dakota was awarded $4,243 for its project, “Emergent Need for Art Therapy at North Dakota Veterans Home Workshop.” This grant provided for the creation of the art therapy program at North Dakota Veterans Home in Lisbon, N.D.

The Department of Nebraska was awarded $3,606 for its project, “Western Nebraska Veterans Home Blanket Warmer.” This grant provided a blanket warmer for residents at the Western Nebraska Veterans Home in Scottsbluff, Neb.

The ALA Colorado Unit 209 was awarded $4,000 for its project, “New Carpet and Dining Room tables and chairs at Crawford House.” This grant provided new padding and carpet for residents at Colorado Veterans Resource Coalition’s Crawford House in Colorado Springs, Colo., to have a comfortable, clean, safe, and attractive atmosphere and two dining room tables with chairs to feed the 21 residents comfortably.

The ALA Department of Illinois was awarded $500 for its “2015 Christmas Gift Shop Program.” This sub grant provided necessary items for veterans to choose gifts to wrap and send to loved ones during the department’s annual Christmas Gift Shop.

The ALA Department of Rhode Island was awarded $3,500 for “ALA Little Rhody Girls State.” This sub grant provided support to the department’s academic program to educate underserved urban high school females in the Rhoad Island area, specializing in parliamentary procedure, the Constitution and legislative process.

The ALA Department of Hawaii was awarded $5,000 for “ALA Aloha Girls State.” This sub grant helped to fund the reinvigorated ALA Aloha Girls State program for June 6-9, 2016, specifically applied to the costs to host the program for up to 36 delegates and associated volunteer staff, giving participants a greater appreciation for civics, leadership, consensus building, and the American Legion Auxiliary mission.

The ALA National Headquarters was awarded $18,000 for “Heritage Support Grant.” This sub grant provided ALA National Headquarters the ability to inventory, catalog, organize, conserve, digitize and preserve nearly 100 years of ALA history for present and future generations.

The ALA Department of Missouri Unit 624 was awarded $500 for “Associates in Action.” This sub grant provided for the unit’s Fall Fashion Show and Lunch to raise funds for a high school senior college scholarship program for children or grandchildren of veterans or active military.

For more information about the American Legion Auxiliary Foundation’s ongoing support of veterans, military, and their families through grants and how you can donate, visit