When a sudden financial crisis befalls an eligible Auxiliary member, the Auxiliary Emergency Fund
may be able to provide temporary emergency assistance when no other source of help is available.
The AEF, on occasion, could be a helping hand for a struggling member in need of food, shelter, or
utilities for her family when a natural disaster or other calamity strikes.
Established in 1969 by the National Executive Committee and funded initially through a generous
legacy gift from Auxiliary member Helen Colby Small of Burlington, Wis., the AEF is now able to
continue to grant assistance through voluntary contributions. The Auxiliary promotes awareness of
the fund, disseminates information about the application process, and solicits donations from units,
departments, and individual members in order to continue its availability as a resource to help
members in certain dire straits. A national AEF grant review committee awards AEF grants to
applicants based on criteria, membership, and fund availability.
In 1981, the AEF program was expanded to include a fund to help members who find themselves
needing to support themselves due to unexpected life-changing circumstances such as death or
illness of a spouse, divorce, or desertion, and who are without the job skills necessary to obtain
adequate employment. Short-term assistance may be provided to help the member acquire
marketable job skills through schooling or job training when all other sources of financial aid have
Applications stemming from a catastrophe for basic needs such as shelter and food are
considered; applications for medical expenses are not considered. To be eligible to apply for AEF
funds, the applicant must be an Auxiliary member who has maintained her membership for the
immediate past two consecutive years and whose membership dues for the current year are paid.
Only through the generosity of Auxiliary members has the AEF remained an available resource for
members in tragic times.
What is the Auxiliary Emergency Fund?
This National American Legion Auxiliary emergency fund provides eligible
members with temporary assistance for:
1. Financial crisis to pay for food, shelter and utilities, when no other source
of aid is readily available.
2. Food and shelter due to weather-related emergencies and natural
3. Educational training for eligible members who lack the necessary skills for
employment or to upgrade competitive workforce skills.