The American Legion Auxiliary is an organization for both women and men who have a desire to honor our American veterans, both living and deceased. Members demonstrate an obligation to our communities, state and Nation, and help promote peace and goodwill. More importantly, the members help safeguard the principles of democracy. In honor of Veteran’s Day 2021 this article hopes to inform the readers of some of the purposes of the Bolivar branch of the American Legion Auxiliary.
The Bolivar chapter meets the fourth Wednesday of the month (except July and August) at 7:00 in the Bolivar Legion. The Unit is very active in the community, seeking ways to help veterans, their families, and community members in need. The Unit sends packages to active service members from our community, and at Christmas time collects items for veterans in Bath, Buffalo or Batavia VA hospitals, based on needs of the selected facility. Individually and collectively the members help veterans’ families where there is a need—-taking meals, offering rides, helping financially when the need arises.
One of the main functions of the auxiliary is helping place flags on veteran’s graves for Memorial Day, joining with the Legionnaires, Sons of the American Legion and Boy Scouts. Members are invited to march in the annual Memorial Day parades in Bolivar and Richburg, and a lunch is provided for them afterwards.
Each year on Veterans’ Day the auxiliary provides a free luncheon for veterans in the community. This year’s will be held from 3-6 PM at the Bolivar Legion, Thursday, November 11. No reservations are necessary. Veterans may bring a guest.
Partnering with the Bolivar Community Improvement club, the auxiliary has donated to the Bolivar Betterment organization to help purchase flowers in the Spring and Fall for the flower boxes and the Community park on Main Street. The auxiliary also keeps the window of the Kenyon Andrus post updated, changing with each season, to help beautify the community on Main Street.
For the past several years the Bolivar Unit has donated to the Cancer Tournament Benefit held at the Bolivar Golf Club in August. Several members worked at the tournament, which last year raised over $28,000 to be used for cancer victims and their families in Allegany, Steuben and Cattaraugus Counties.
Each year the auxiliary offers the opportunity for a female high school junior to attend Empire Girls’ State in June, helping shape future leaders. Also, the unit selects two high school seniors for the annual Legion Auxiliary scholarship of $200 each, based on eligibility criteria and essays the students submit on what it means to them to be an American.
Throughout the year the auxiliary holds fundraisers—poppy sales, breakfasts, dinners, basket raffles, chances on gift items—— to maintain funds to continue helping those in need, and sponsoring scholarships.
The rewards of being a member of an organization that promotes goodwill in the community, helps preserve the memory of those who fought for our freedoms and are currently serving, defends democracy, and helps those in need are countless.
New members are always welcome! God bless America!