2018-2019 National Youth Activities Ambassador
Four Ways Your Auxiliary Can Involve Youth
Fall is near and Post/Auxiliary happenings will soon start picking up. What a great time to get youth in the community involved in your activities and communicating with our veterans. Invite youth and their families to attend Post/Auxiliary events. If you don’t extend an invitation, they won’t come! Hosting family-friendly events is a great way to get the word out about who we are and what we do for veterans and our communities.
There are four goals/initiatives for the Youth Activities Program this year:
1. Creating and/or Supporting Youth Groups
Chances are you have youth that help out around your Post/Auxiliary. Many after-school and youth programs across the country are experiencing budget cuts and/or disbanding. This is a perfect opportunity to get them involved in our great organization and teach them all about patriotism and team work.
2. Use and/or Reuse of the R.A.P. Cards and/or Coins
Youth like to be recognized for a job well done! Giving out the R.A.P. cards and coins is a perfect way to do that. But what happens to them after the shine wears off? Chances are they end up in the garbage or the bottom of the toy box. Why not come up with different ways to reuse them? For example, your Auxiliary can host a movie night and admission can be a certain number of coins or cards. Or, maybe different drinks, snacks and toys are offered in exchange for a certain number of coins or cards. Think outside the box and please share how your Auxiliary uses or reuses R.A.P. cards and/or coins. Pictures are welcomed and encouraged.
3. Youth Groups Supporting Our Veterans citations
Youth Groups Supporting Our Veterans citations are FREE! These citations from National Headquarters are a great way to recognize and honor the hard working youth of the community and of the Auxiliary. There will be a special award given to one youth group in each Program Division with an outstanding project submitted for a Youth Groups Supporting Our Veterans citation. Less than 800 citations have been mailed in the last three program years. Let’s make this year the biggest ever by giving out more citations than ever before. I would love to see us send more than 1,500 out this year!
Get the citation request form on the resource page of the website www.vfwauxiliary.org/resources. Remember this citation is for youth groups, not individual youth.
4. Create a Contest for Students in Grades K-5
With school back in session, it is a perfect time to create a contest for elementary age children that promotes patriotism. Speak with teachers about the possibility of making the contest a class project or offered for extra credit. Be creative! Most of all – make it fun for the kids!
There are so many ways to get youth involved in what we do. I look forward to reading and seeing what your Auxiliary chooses to do!