Mission Training 2018
Mission Training Las Vegas NV February 3, 2018
Our morning started with finding our seat. You do not sit with people you know but those you don’t, so you can hear new ideas and make new friends.
We opened with prayer, pledge, preamble and our mission statement. They reminded us what this organization is all about. In reminding us who we are we were asked to find out who else was at our table.
We talked about Branding- Who we are and what we do. We talked again of our impact numbers. $1.7 Billion is the value of American Legion Auxiliary members’ volunteer service in 2017.
Volunteer Hours Serving Mission Outreach
Volunteer Hours Serving Veterans and Communities
Resources raised & spent on veterans, military families
Resources raised & spent to support youths, scholarships & communities
Even though 100% of Departments participate in sending in reports, there are only 62% of the Units reporting. I am hoping that our new form for this year will help Colorado increase our percentage of reporting. National is also looking to simplify their form and are working on simplifying the entire process. We will continue to figure out how to make this easier too.
With every year that they hold these Mission Training sessions there are increased numbers of Senior and Junior members attending. National will continue to offer these training sessions and looking to increase knowledge to its members.
We need to recommit our commitment to our organization. Do you know your why you belong to this organization and why we are here? We need to connect both our family to make this organization stronger so that when our Veterans, military and families need us we are there.
We need to remind our members that all meetings are open meetings and that they can attend any of them. This includes Mid-Year, Convention, National Convention, and Mission Training to name a few. If unable to attend those meetings there is the ALA Academy that is available to any member. Just go to alaforveterans.org. You can view these as a group or individually. We need to keep working on the Centennial Strategic Plan. This will help us keep our numbers that we currently have and eventually attract new members so that we grow. But we have to start within our units, districts and departments. This does not mean that one group has to push everyone else out by bullying members into thinking their way is the only way to attract new members and to keep them.
We all have friends that we are unable to make a member. By working the Mission, we will make a difference.
Our mission is to help someone, but we don’t have to do everything. We need to refocus our energy. To do this we need to work what we can and when we can. Not everyone likes to attend meetings, but we need to keep our members in the loop with emails, phone calls, social media to name a few ways. If you don’t let them know what you are doing, then you can’t expect them to continue to be a member. You need to communicate and be patient and kind. Encourage them to take a chance to make a choose to make a change. We need to remember that it is Service Not Self. There is not one committee more important than another.
Again, we have been saying that you don’t have to work all the committees. Select the activities that your members want to do.
Next, we discussed how we need to engage our Youth. We need to get on their level, but we need to protect and care for them. We need to educate them on our history. We need to recognize our Youth Heroes and our Good Deed Youth too. Keep our eyes open to what the Youth are doing. This does not need to be members. We need to make sure our leaders of our Juniors have the passion to give them the encouragement to grow in our organization. They are not servants, or slaves, let them run their meetings and to have fun in their meeting. We need to watch and learn from our Juniors. Encourage them to earn Patches and now we can encourage our younger SAL members to earn patches too.
After lunch we saw some videos on Family Readiness Group (FRG). We were given a list of groups for each state. I will give this to our VA&R Chair. We don’t need to have each unit to contact them. We need to do the simplest things for these families: Mother Daughter Tea, Spring Flings, Baby Showers, Pillow cases with Pictures, to name a few ideas. But we need to also remember that they still have privacy rights.
Did you know that New Mexico has been working on their first Fischer House? There are accomplishments all over that we can help with if we keep our eyes open.
Let our communities know that we are here. A simple thing to do is replace a flag for individuals and businesses. Some members do this on a regular basis around their community. They pick 4 individuals and 4 businesses to give a new flag. This would be an easy project to do. You can start out on a smaller scale and build on it as your unit can.
The Leadership at Mission training issued a challenge on Americanism. What can your unit do? This will challenge you to work several committees together.
Organize an activity involving Juniors, the Patch Program, Poppies and the non- member friends of Juniors.
How could you promote brand awareness during the activity?
Plan an activity with both Junior and Senior members.C&Y and children
of deploying National Guardsmen.
Record the dollars and hours for the activity.
Plan one activity that involves these three programs: < >< >ALA Girls State
Plan how to share your story of success with the public?
The thoughts from our Juniors that attended. They gave me one thing that they walked away with from this training. Learned a new way to make poppies Meet a new friend. Poppies and new friends Talking with people from different states Found inspiration. Enjoyed the activities. The other Juniors were counting down until they could leave. Need more icebreakers so that communication and activities happen. Wished they could have shared how we do the Military Childs table ceremony. They felt it was altered. Not impressed. The other attendees did not know much about the ALA. Not involved. They were acting like they had no choice to being there. Not allowed to socialize much.
The Juniors has a meeting before we all separated. They have chosen to go back to MN. They enjoyed that training much better.
My final thoughts are that Senior members need more time to Socialize too. Maybe have a social time combined with the Juniors to just have some fun. This does not need to be a long time but there should be an opportunity to share. We arrived late on Friday that I felt that our group did not have much time to social/bond together either. We need to go with a better plan for outside the meeting time.
We will see where we go next year.
National Convention Updates
September 2016: President Elect Ann attended national convention in Cincinnati. Please see the attached for complete in-depth information.