The American Legion Auxiliary Girls State and Girls Nation programs reach thousands of young women across the country each year and help them develop and strengthen their knowledge of government and leadership skills.

Despite being a major priority for Auxiliary volunteers, young women who have heard of or even attended ALA Girls State or ALA Girls Nation fail to recognize the connection to the American Legion Auxiliary. That’s why the ALA Foundation started the Mission in Action grant – to ensure that all of the Auxiliary’s programs are adequately branded so that more people can learn about and support veterans, military, and their families.

In 2019, the ALA Department of Kansas applied for and received a Mission in Action grant to purchase Auxiliary banners to use at their ALA Kansas Girls State program.

“The participants of ALA Kansas Girls State were made more aware of the American Legion Auxiliary and its programs,” said Rachel Barnes, director of ALA Kansas Girls State.

“We are grateful for the opportunity, and without the ALA Foundation, we could not have increased our branding in this way.”

In order to celebrate this accomplishment, the Department of Kansas went above and beyond, hosting an impactful dedication ceremony to show off and explain the importance of the branded materials with ALA Foundation Board of Directors President and Kansas native Doris Hammeke. In addition, other ALA members spoke on the importance of the organization and its support of veterans, military, and their families.

“I really appreciated that they came to talk to us,” said Maddie Johnson, ALA Kansas Girls State participant. “The presentation made me realize that we need more support and better care of veterans in this country.”

Though branded banners may not seem like a must-have item, they can help spread the word about the good works of the Auxiliary in your community. Your ALA unit or department can apply for a Mission in Action grant to help brand your program today. Get started at