Does your department have what it takes?

Does your department have what it takes?

Dear American Legion Family Members and Friends,

We’re all friends and family here. We’re all on the same team to support our nation’s veterans, military families and America’s youth.

But a little competition never hurt anyone. Right?

That’s why I was so pleased to hear that the Department of California is challenging all American Legion departments to a contest throughout July. The premise is pretty simple: all departments are categorized by their population. And the department in each category that raises the most money for the 100 Miles for Hope via Kilter and 100 Miles for Hope merchandise purchases during the month of July is deemed the winner.

Of course, the disabled veterans and military families who receive support from the Veterans & Children Foundation (V&CF) are the real winners, or beneficiaries. This competition will help ensure that funds are available for our network of 3,000 accredited American Legion service officers who help disabled veterans and their families navigate the challenging VA system to ensure they receive the benefits they’ve earned through their service. Donations to V&CF also support our Temporary Financial Assistance (TFA) program. TFA provides grants to military families with young children who have fallen upon financial hard times through no fault of their own.

So how you can help support our nation’s disabled veterans military families in need?

There are instructions on how to join the breakout challenge here. Once you are in, you can also customize and download a special cheer card to show your support for your department. (See breakout challenge web page for instructions). Share your activity and encourage others to join and/or support your department by posting a photo on social media (use hashtag #100MilesForHope) and publish it on our Legiontown web page (

During the pandemic, our American Legion Family showed how we move mountains to support our communities in tough circumstances. We don’t necessarily have to hike mountains to support departments in the breakout challenge, though we could.

No matter if you walk, hike, ruck, bike, do yoga, garden, ride your motorcycle or do any one of more than 40 other activities, what matters most is that you are participating in the 100 Miles for Hope Breakout Challenge. Our nation’s disabled veterans and struggling military families are counting on all of us. 

This is one big way that we in the American Legion Family can continue to show the nation and each other what it means when we say: Veterans Strengthening America.