National Emergency Fund
Disaster relief has been a part of The American Legion’s identity since the early 1920’s when it entered a formalized agreement with the Red Cross to provide volunteer help and raise money in times of catastrophe.
Known as The American Legion’s Disaster Relief Program, it worked in conjunction with the Red Cross for about fifty (50) years. Over that time, The American Legion through local posts, assisted disaster victims with housing, food, supplies and cleanup.
After Hurricane Camille struck the Gulf Coast in 1969, the National Executive Committee created the National Emergency Fund (NEF) as a one-time initiative to better assist American Legion family members and posts, with immediate funds of up to $1,500 for individuals, and up to $5,000 for posts.
In 1989, when Hurricane Hugo pummeled South Carolina, the NEF was revived. It continues to assist Legion Family members recovering from natural disasters. Grants of up to $3,000 each are awarded to eligible individuals, with up to $10,000 for posts.
Since the NEF’s inception, nearly $9 million has been provided in direct financial assistance to American Legion and SAL members, as well as posts. Not one donated dollar is used for fundraising or administrative costs. Funds are provided as grants, not loans.
The funds are not designed for insurance compensation or to cover monetary losses from a business, nonresidential structures on property (like barns or sheds), equipment or vehicles.
Disbursement amounts are decided on a case-by-case basis. Applications are available at department headquarters or online at legion.org/nef.
Tax-deductible donations to the NEF can be made at legio.org/donate. Learn more about the program at legion.org/nef.
For God and Country,
National Executive Committeeman